After the Vijay Mallya scam shook the country, businessmen and bankers were both really careful to either not engage in any foul play or at least not get caught with it. But the greed for money is such that no one can really escape it.
Recently, the second-largest state-owned bank, Punjab National Bank (PNB), discovered a $1.77 billion, i.e. ₹11,400 crore fraud at a Mumbai branch. Following the news, the Enforcement Directorate conducted multiple searches in various locations of internationally popular jewellery designer Nirav Modi.
— The Hindu (@the_hindu) February 15, 2018
Last year, i.e. in 2017, Priyanka Chopra was appointed as the global ambassador and face of the brand, alongside the Bollywood hunk, Siddharth Malhotra. The duo, however, is not the only celebrities to endorse the brand. Lisa Haydon was the face of Nirav Modi brand before PeeCee.
According to a report by Economic Times, after news of the scam got out, Priyanka Chopra issued a statement severing all ties with the designer. She is also suing him for non-payment of dues for the endorsement ads. Siddharth Malhotra, who had signed a contract of three commercials with the brand, is also considering legal options in the given situation.
His jewellery was not restricted to just B-town celebs. A-listers from Hollywood like Kate Winslet and Dakota Johnson wore his brand to the red carpet of award shows.
A Wharton dropout, Nirav Modi’s father is also a diamond jeweller who migrated to Antwerp, Belgium. However, he returned to Mumbai to learn the diamond trade from his uncle Mehul Choksi, who is the Chairman of Gitanjali Group.
As per a Zee News report, Modi fled the country on January 1st, much before the initial complaint filed by PNB, which was on 29th January.
The CBI has booked Nirav Modi for cheating. Whether this will be another Mallya case or not, we don’t know. But some might say it would be wise for prominent celebrities to not get involved with the brand right now.