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Indian foreign secretary Harsh Vardhan Shringla who was on a visit to the UK last week discussed the extradition of economic offenders with his British interlocutors, Indian foreign ministry spokesman Arindam Bagchi said on Thursday.

India has been pursuing the return of Vijay Mallya, who is wanted in connection with a money laundering case registered against him. Mallya is believed to be undergoing a 'confidential' asylum application process after all his legal appeals to stay on in Britain were denied.

New Delhi is also seeking the extradition of Nirav Modi who along with his uncle Mehul Choksi are accused of routing transactions of about 13,600 crore through fraudulent Letters of Undertaking (LoUs) of Punjab National Bank (PNB), according to news reports.

Shringla was on a two-day visit to the UK on 23-24 July.

According to Bagchi, Shringla’s visit was to “conduct a review of our comprehensive strategic partnership launched at the India-UK Virtual Summit between the two Prime Ministers on 4 May."

“In the discussions, the implementation of the India-UK Roadmap 2030 was assessed. Several issues of bilateral interest including implementation of the migration and mobility partnership, global innovation partnership, climate action, return of economic offenders, defence and security ties, regional issues including Afghanistan, UNSC and Commonwealth matters were discussed. The need for early removal of restrictions imposed on travel from India and the mutual recognition of covid vaccination certificates was raised," Bagchi said.

India and the UK in May announced an ambitious roadmap to refashion bilateral ties by 2030 into a “Comprehensive Strategic Partnership." The two countries also launched an Enhanced Trade Partnership, and announced their intent to negotiate a comprehensive Free Trade Agreement including an interim trade agreement to deliver early gains. “They agreed to continue removing trade barriers on the path to an FTA, and an ambitious target of more than doubling India-UK trade by 2030," a joint statement issued in May had said.

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