Cordingley suspect's extradition approved

An Indian magistrate has given the go-ahead for Rajwinder Singh, who is accused of killing Toyah Cordingley four years ago, to be extradited to Australia.

Justice Swati Sharma told a New Delhi court on Tuesday she had written an order approving the extradition, to which Singh, speaking via video link, mumbled "thank you".

Singh, 38 did not appear at the hearing in person because there were no officers available to escort him from Tihar Jail to the court as city police were preoccupied with security arrangements for Republic Day celebrations on Thursday.

Instead, Singh attended the hearing via a video link.

His image on the link was not clear and the angle of the camera largely concealed his face so it was not possible to see his expression.

It was presumably one of relief as Singh has maintained since his arrest in India last December that he wants to return to Australia - where he has a wife and three children - to face trial.

Singh, an Australian citizen, worked as a nurse and lived in Innisfail.

The prime suspect in Cordingley's killing, he was arrested in India after a four-year manhunt that followed his escape from Australia just hours after Cordingley's body was found half-buried in sand dunes on Wangetti Beach, in north Queensland.

Australian police want to question Singh over whether he stabbed Cordingley, who was 24, after an argument over her dog barking at him.

Australian police said Cordingley, a pharmacy worker, had suffered "visible, violent injuries".

Her dog was found tied up nearby.

The court order, along with the file and other documents, will now be sent to officials in India's Ministry of External Affairs.

External Affairs Minister Subrahmanyam Jaishankar will have the final say on Singh's extradition.

The Indian government has already provisionally consented to Australia's request for Singh's extradition, which needed to be signed off by the court.

Lawyers involved in the case say it could take 30 to 45 days before Singh is placed on a flight back to Australia.