LONDON: A 62-year-old Indian-origin man wanted in India on suspicion of kidnapping and murdering his friend and business partner in Punjab last year has been tracked to his home in Britain.
Mr Baldev Singh Deol, who was seen at his home in Wolverhampton in the West Midlands region of England, cannot be arrested because extradition papers are yet to be processed by the Indian authorities, UK police said yesterday.
Mr Deol is wanted by Punjab Police in connection with the murder of 54-year-old Mr Ranjit Singh Power, an Indian-origin hotelier from Wolverhampton who went missing on a visit to India in May 2015.
While his body is yet to be recovered, his disappearance is being treated as murder.
“This is an Indian police investigation. As yet, West Midlands police haven’t received any formal request for extradition proceedings from the Indian authorities. We remain ready to assist with any inquiries should a request be made,” a West Midlands spokesperson said.
Indian taxi driver Mr Sukhdev Singh remains in custody after police said he had confessed to the killing but police in India want to arrest Mr Deol to question him on his role in allegedly instigating the killing.
“Of course, I’m in the UK. Don’t worry about it darling, I’m here,” Mr Deol told The Times newspaper over phone.
He has an Interpol arrest warrant against him on charges of “kidnapping, murder and disappearance of evidence of offence committed” but an extradition notice submitted to the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) in India is reportedly yet to be processed.
Indian police believe Mr Power’s murder may have been rooted in his business dealings in India and the UK.
Last October, Mr Power’s daughter said a body returned to the UK by Punjab police was not her father’s.
The corpse, found in an Indian river, was initially thought to be that of Power but DNA and dental analysis ruled out a match at an inquest in the UK in February this year.
The UK Foreign Office said it is providing support to the Power family.