Former Team Anna members Arvind Kejriwal and Prashant Bhushan have questioned the source of funds of businessman Robert Vadra, who, they alleged, was on a “property buying spree”.

In the last four years, Vadra, son-in-law of Congress President Sonia Gandhi, had bought at least 31 properties worth crores of rupees, mostly in and around New Delhi, they alleged in a press conference here.

The Congress and the Haryana Government rubbished the allegations as baseless, with party spokesperson Manish Tiwari accusing Kejriwal of being the ‘B Team’ of BJP.

Congress Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs Harish Rawat, said Vadra was a businessman and all businessmen take loans for growth. The Opposition BJP, however, sought an investigation into the charges.

On Friday, the Kejriwal-headed India Against Corruption released documents sourced from the Registrar of Companies Web site, which they alleged “showed a possible quid pro quo”, between Vadra and Delhi-based realty major DLF, that needed investigation.

“An analysis of the balance sheets and audit reports of five companies set up by him (and owned exclusively by him (Vadra) and his mother) on or after 1/11/2007 show that the total share capital of these companies was just Rs 50 lakh and these companies together had no income from any legitimate business activity (except by way of interest derived from interest free loans obtained from DLF).

“Yet during 2007-2010, they have acquired properties which were worth well over Rs 300 crore even at their time of acquisition and are worth more than Rs 500 crore as of today,” Bhushan said.

The duo alleged that the “ostensible seed money for this acquisition is shown to have come from unsecured interest free loans from DLF Ltd (over Rs 65 crore).”

Vadra also got seven flats in DLF’s Magnolia Apartments in Gurgaon, a 10,000 sq feet pent-house apartment in DLF Aralias, a stake of 50 per cent share in DLF-owned hotel Hilton Garden Inn in Saket at much below market rates, they said, quoting from RoC documents.

Kejriwal and Bhushan wanted to know why DLF gave large unsecured interest free loans to Vadra and why DLF properties were sold to Vadra at throwaway prices and on the basis of funds obtained by Vadra from DLF itself?

They said it was significant that six new companies had also been registered by Vadra in 2012.

“Prima facie, the facts above show commission of offences under the Prevention of Corruption Act as well offences under the Income Tax Act,” they said, and called for an investigation.

(This article was published on October 5, 2012)
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