The scandal of the two Indian brothers who are wanted by the authorities in their countries for defrauding almost 1 billion USD, involves even Albania’s highest institutions.
Indian media say that the first arrests for the Sterling Biotech scandal were made in November 2017. Two months later, on January 2018, the Central Bureau of Investigations in India issued an arrest order for Niti and Chetan Sandesara.
But despite being on the run, Nitin Sandesara received Albanian citizenship just one month later, through a special procedure, as informed by the president’s office.
“We implemented all legal procedures, based on the proposition of the Ministry of Tourism and Environment, which informed us that it was about realizing important investment in our country”, the Presidency declared.
So, the Ministry of Blendi Klosi was the one proposing the two brothers to receive Albanian citizenship. But the scandal goes even further. After receiving Albanian citizenship, Nitin Sandesara is appointed by the Foreign ministry as Consul of Honor of Albania in Nigeria.
Based on the official regulation, the Consul of Honor is appointed by proposition of the Embassy or by the Foreign Ministry of the receiving country, (Nigeria, in this case, or its embassy in Rome).
The former Albanian Foreign Minister also removed responsibility from himself, after the report on Top Channel, by underlining that there are other structures that do the vetting for consuls.
Bushati gave some journalism lectures yesterday by hiding his responsibility, but he must answer about the price of this appointing, because the Indian businessman was not appointed Consul in Nigeria because of his diplomatic career, but because he was rich.
The failure of our law enforcement and secret service institutions to vet Niti Sandesra is just one side of the scandal. The other side is the two Albanian Ministries, (Tourism, then led by Blendi Klosi; Foreign, led by Bushati), have given diplomatic immunity to a person who stole almost 1 billion USD, part of which were to be laundered in Albania.