The trouble for the fugitive diamond merchant, Nirav Modi just seems to be escalating as his posh bungalow in Alibaug which could not be razed earlier due to the high-grade materials used for construction will now be demolished through controlled blasting technique on 8th March.
The Raigad district administration has started preparing for the demolition of the illegal sea-facing bungalow of fugitive businessman Nirav Modi which was constructed on a sprawling area of 1071 square meters on Kihim beach, which was 674 sq meters more than the permitted area.
Raigad collector Dr. Vijay Suryawanshi has tasked additional collector Bharat Shitole to execute the blasting. Shitole, who has until now, blasted 40 illegal buildings in Bhayander, has deployed an excavator to remove tiles and plaster to expose the pillar on Tuesday. Three drilling machines will make holes in the RCC pillars to insert dynamite sticks.
Shitole, known as a ‘Demolition Man through blasting’ among official circles, said, “Non-arrival of some machinery led to a delay in preparation on Tuesday”. The building was slated to be demolished earlier in January but could not be razed due to its high stability construction. Reports say that there were also valuable furniture and decorative pieces inside the building which have been taken out and will now be auctioned by the state government.
RTI activist Dilip Jog said the bungalow alone costs over Rs 25 crore at market rates. “High-grade cement was used, so the excavators failed to raze the bungalow,” he added.
On December 7, 2018, the state government had filed an affidavit in the HC claiming that the illegal bungalow belonging to Modi on Alibaug has been razed and demolition notices have been served to another 58 illegal properties in the area. The buildings were constructed in violation of the coastal zone norms in Maharashtra.
Though this action is not related to the Punjab National Bank fraud, in which Modi is the accused, it dates back to 2010, when he received the demolition notice. Modi was permitted 376 sq meters in Kihim, but he constructed on 1,071 sq meters instead, which was 674 sq meters more than the permitted area.
Earlier the government had written to the Enforcement Directorate (ED), which has attached Nirav Modi’s bungalow as part of its probe into the PNB fraud, seeking permission for the demolition.
In India too, the ED had in May moved the special court in Mumbai requesting permission for ‘immediate confiscation’ of about 7000 crores worth assets of designer diamond jeweler Nirav Modi under the recently annunciated ‘Fugitive Economic Offenders Ordinance’.
The department has since then attached several of Nirav Modi’s properties and bank accounts worth thousands of crores.