India grants British High Commission consular access to Christian Michel

Christian Michel. Photograph:( ANI )

WION New Delhi, Delhi, India Jan 11, 2019, 05.13 PM (IST) Siddhant Sibal

The Indian government has granted British officials the consular access to meet Christian Michel who is the alleged key middleman in the AgustaWestland case. 

On Friday, Ministry of External Affairs spokesperson Raveesh Kumar said," I can confirm Christian Michel has been granted consular access". A second secretary level officer from the British High Commission met Michel on Thursday. 

The British High Commission also confirmed saying, "Our staff are supporting a British man who is detained in India, and have visited him to check his welfare". The High Commission had requested India to grant consular access to Michel last month when he was extradited from the UAE.

Remember Christian Michel, who despite being a British national, was extradited from the UAE on December 2018. The operation to get him back was named operation 'Unicorn' and according to the CBI, it was "carried out under the guidance of National Security Advisor Ajit Doval" and was "coordinated by interim CBI Director M Nageshwar Rao."

Michel's extradition is being considered a shot in the arm for the Modi government just before the 2019 polls. Reacting to the extradition, PM Modi had said, "we've caught a 'raazdaar' of chopper scam and brought him here. The entire family (Gandhi family) is now scared of the things which will be revealed. They are scared as to whose name will he take if he opens his mouth."

He has been in the custody of the CBI and the Enforcement Directorate (ED) since December. According to the ED, during an interrogation, Michel had taken the name of "Mrs Gandhi," though the reference wasn't clear. He had spoken about the "the son of the Italian lady" and how he is going to become the “next prime minister of the country."

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The British High Commission also confirmed saying, 'Our staff are supporting a British man who is detained in India, and have visited him to check his welfare.'