India has seized over ₹548 million worth of paintings from Nirav Modi’s art collection including prized work by VS Gaitonde

  • The income tax department of India recovered ₹ 548 million from the paintings owned by PNB scam accused Nirav Modi.
  • The department targeted a value of ₹970 million from the auction event held in Mumbai.
  • Camelot Enterprises, Nirav Modi’s company has filed a petition in the Bombay High Court for auctioning the paintings — calling the move unlawful.
A few days ago, Punjab National Bank(PNB) scam accused Nirav Modi was arrested in London. The income tax department of India, today, auctioned the seized artwork paintings at the Saffron Art Gallery in Mumbai.

According to media reports, the government recovered nearly ₹548 million by selling 55 of the 68 paintings during the bidding session that went on for more than two hours. However, the income tax department expected to recover ₹970 million from the event. The collection, in total, fetched ₹609 million.

The auction included bidders from London, New York and New Delhi among others, bidding online for the paintings.

As the auction took place, on Wednesday, Camelot Enterprises. Nirav Modi’s company, has filed a petition against the auction of paintings in the Bombay High Court calling the move unlawful. The company also said a few of those paintings are actually company’s assets, demanding to restrict the auction.

Ranging from thousands to millions, the paintings were the artwork by renowned Indian painters including Raja Ravi Verma, FN Souza, Jogen Chowdhury, VS Gaitonde and Akbar Padamsee. For instance, Raja Ravi Verma’s oil on canvas from 1881 was sold at ₹140 million.

Of the 55 painting sold during the auction, the highest amount fetched from a painting was recorded at ₹220 million and nearly 10 paintings touched the ₹ 10 million mark.

While, the 13 unsold paintings include a few by Chinese painters including a Miao Xiaochun piece. The paintings were sold at a Goods & Services Tax (GST) of 12% along with a 15% commission for the auction house.

Nirav Modi’s legal team is expected to file the second bail application in the UK court on Friday since he denied the first bail application on March 20. The CBI will send a team to Londom for the hearing on 29 March, ANI reported.

Earlier, the ED reportedly seized around ₹6.4 billion from Nirav Modi’s assets including his property, bank deposits and jewellery.

See also:
Here’s how the 13-month chase for Nirav Modi came to an end

India presses new charges against diamond merchant Nirav Modi and wife Ami in alleged money laundering case