India is in regular touch with the US authorities for a speedy and early extradition of Tahawwur Rana, Foreign Secretary Vinay Kwatra said on Thursday against the backdrop of a US court approving extradition of the 26/11 Mumbai attacks accused.
In a major victory for India’s fight in bringing perpetrators of the 26/11 attacks to justice, US Magistrate Judge Jacqueline Chooljian of the US District Court of the central district of California issued a 48-page order on May 16, saying Rana should be extradited to India.
“Insofar as the question of Tahawwur Rana is concerned, we are in very regular touch with the US authorities to ensure that there is speedy and early extradition of Tahawwur Rana. We have all seen the judgement which was given by the local US court there. That conversation of ours with the US side is continuing,” Kwatra said.
He was replying to a question at a media briefing on whether Prime Minister Narendra Modi will take up the issue of Rana’s extradition to India if there is a bilateral meeting between him and US President Joe Biden on the sidelines of the G7 summit in Hiroshima.
Kwatra did not confirm a bilateral meeting between Prime Minister Modi and President Biden.
“The bilateral meetings on the sidelines of the G7 summit are still being firmed up. So I am not going to make any assumptions about which meeting will happen and which will not,” he said.
Prime Minister Modi will leave for Hiroshima on Friday to attend three separate sessions at the G7 summit.
The ruling on Rana’s extradition came just over a month before Prime Minister Modi travels to the US on his first state visit at the invitation of Biden.
The 48-page order dated May 16 was released on Wednesday.
Rana, who is currently in the federal lockup in downtown Los Angeles, can appeal in the Circuit Court.
There is an extradition treaty in place between India and the US. The judge ruled that Rana’s extradition to India is fully under the jurisdiction of the treaty