Owner of Gitanjali Gems Mehul Choksi's lawyer, Sanjay Abbott, on Saturday clarified that the letter sent by the owner to the employees was for them to gain clarity on the situation.
Talking to ANI, Abbott, whose client is an accused in the 1.77 billion dollar Punjab National Bank (PNB) fraud, clarified that no notice was received regarding any seizure of property with respect to the ongoing probe.
"Letter was written because everything has been sealed. My client is not in a position to operate any account to pay the employees. So it was written to tell them that they are free, and dues will be paid when the situation returns to normalcy," he said.
Reiterating Choksi's adherence to legal procedures while availing loans, Abbott stated that the amount was taken towards official purposes, and added that the matter will be examined extensively once the charge-sheet is filed.
The advocate further established that he was in touch with Choksi, but was unaware of his whereabouts.
" Yes, we are in touch. That is a privilege communication between me and my client, and I am not supposed to disclose details. However, I have no idea where my client is," he said.
Earlier, Choksi, in a letter to his employees, stated that he would be unable to clear their dues in lieu of the ongoing probe in the 1.77 billion dollar scam.
Choksi, in a communication to over 3,500 employees, said it would be "very tough" to clear dues of his employees or pay future salaries, as investigative agencies had seized his bank accounts and other properties, adding that the manner of investigation was starting to create havoc, and were hell bent on stopping the operations.
Highlighting the "situation of fear and injustice"
created against him and the company, Choksi suggested to employees that in view of the uncertainty looming over payment of dues, termination of office operations, and "unfair investigation", they begin scouting for alternate career options.
Choksi also maintained his stance of being falsely accused of defrauding PNB, and assured that employee dues would be cleared once justice is served and the situation returns to normalcy.