An unverified message on social media falsely claims that fugitive businessman Nirav Modi was forced by Congress members to leave India and that he paid 456 crores as commission to Congress.
On September 7, the second leg of the extradition of Nirav Modi's trial started at a London Court through a video conference. The 49-year-old jeweller has been lodging at a London prison since March 2019.
In the backdrop of this, a message resurfaced which claims that Nirav Modi has testified that he was forced by Congress leaders to escape from India. He had apparently paid Rs 456 crore as a commission to these leaders.
A picture of Nirav Modi was shared on a Twitter page with a caption in Hindi that can be roughly translated to, "Congress sent Kapil Sibal to London! Sonia Gandhi Rahul also-ran! Nirav Modi's statement in London court: I did not run away I was forced to run away! 456 crore commissions took by Congress leaders! I didn't eat have it all alone, the congress also has a share in it. So, it should be paid all together: Nirav Modi."
Many other Twitter users shared the same message.
"I was threatened by Congress leaders to escape and run away from India. I paid them a commission of Rs 456 Cr to Congress leaders," reads the post in Hindi.
When we checked, we found that this claim is viral on Facebook since 2019.
In our investigation, we found this claim to be false. When we searched on the internet with relevant keyword searches, we did not find any such reports stating Nirav Modi's statements as mentioned in the viral message were found.
On March 21, 2019, Times of India reported and specifically quoted the words spoken by Nirav Modi in Westminster Magistrates' Court. "I do not consent," the fugitive diamantaire had responded when District Judge Marie Mallon had asked if he would consent to his extradition.
Further, the only other details that he gave were confirmation of his date of birth and address.
Naomi Canton, a journalist based in London who reports for the Times of India in the UK had confirmed to Alt News last year that the statement doing the rounds is, "fake news".
"I was in court and Nirav Modi did not say this in open court. He spoke just to confirm his name and gave his date of birth and address. He was asked if he consented to extradition and he said I do not consent. Other than that it was just his barrister who spoke and the CPS," she was quoted as saying.
In conclusion, an unverified message on social media falsely claims that fugitive businessman Nirav Modi was forced by Congress members to leave India and that he paid 456 crores as commission to Congress.
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