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Extradition of Christian Michel to India is very significant in bringing back Vijay Mallya & Nirav Modi
The kingpin of Augusta Westland chopper-scam, Christian James Michel was finally extradited to India.

It's really a significant success by Indian government. It's not that he is the first person extradited to India. Around 68 people have been extradited to India earlier. The list includes three British nationals and one each from Australia, Canada, Israel, US, Thailand and Romania and rest are Indian fugitives. Twenty three countries extradited such accused as of today.

But Christian Michel would be the first person involved in corruption of top politicians where a government (UPA) is accused. As per information available there are number of UPA ministers including Sonia Gandhi and Ahmad Patel are accused of receiving bribery apart from former Air force chief S.P.Tyagi.

When the news spread that Michel is being flied to India yesterday night, politics start immediately. Some BJP members said that this is a win for BJP government and now the Congress would be in dock. Many also concerned on the timing of the extradition as the last leg of Rajasthan assembly election is on and the 2019 general election is approaching. Politicisation of this extradition is inevitable and clearly BJP has a bit upper hand.

Now question is whether Sonia Gandhi and others can really be booked or even charges framed against them? Well according to me it's very difficult to frame these top politicians. Reasons are plenty. Bribes could have been taken (if really taken) in such a way that they will remain invisible in the money trail. Some writing in the diary is not applicable as an evidence. I don't think Christian Michel to be approver of the scam. Thus bottom line is that the Augusta scam would be like that of Bofors scam where none is going to be convicted.

But then the extradition of Christian Michel is still very significant achievement because he is a British national. So India got a bargaining tool against England who are not serious in extraditing Vijay Mallya and Nirav Modi. The Augusta Westland might be a political tool for BJP, then I think BJP government wouldn't mind in swapping Michel with Mallya and Nirav Modi.

Vijay Mallya too smelled the fine print in Michel's extradition. That's why he tweeted that he is ready to return the capital of his loan (amounting around Rs 6000 crores). Every bank has a system of one time settlement where capital plus some interest is charged to settle that. Thus Vijay Mallya now wanted a settlement because he is fearing that British government may swap him against Christian Michel. Criminal or not Christian Michel is a British citizen thus British government is duty bound to save him.

Narendra Modi could get much appreciation in getting back Vijay Mallya or the loan amount he has taken than booking Congress leadership on corruption. Similarly getting back Nirav Modi is also an achievement for him. All these if possible before 2019 general election then BJP could use it as weapon in electoral campaign.

On the other hand Congress would also want this Michel menace to be ended as soon as possible. They might be sure that no evidence could be made but then politics is entirely perception and thus the perception during presence of Christian Michel would be damaging for Congress.

The bottom line is that irrespective of position in Augusta Westland case, the extradition of Christian Michel is very significant in mounting pressure on British Government to extradite Vijay Mally and Nirav Modi.

Editorial NOTE: This article is categorized under Opinion Section. The views expressed in this article are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of In case you have a opposing view, please click here to share the same in the comments section.
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