PIL seeks CBI probe into Vadra land deals
A public interest litigation (PIL) has been filed in the Delhi high court seeking a court-monitored CBI probe into various land deals allegedly entered into by firms in which Robert Vadra has interests and grant of licenses to change land use of purchased agricultural plots in Gurgaon in Haryana.
The PIL, which may come up for hearing on 23 April, also seeks a probe into land deals entered into by Skylight Hospitality Pvt Ltd and its subsidiaries in Rajasthan in which Vadra is said to have stakes.
‘Issue a direction to the respondent no.1 CBI to register a criminal case...in land deals in Rajasthan by the Respondent no. 3 (Vadra firm), its subsidiary companies and its directors having hand and conspiracy with the state/central government information creating huge loss to the public exchequer and poor farmers ...,’ it said.
In a recently published report in Wall Street Journal, there was a sensational revelation about Vadra, the son-in-law of Congress president Sonia Gandhi, who has been has been the focus of a number of real estate-related controversies.
According to the report, Vadra had real estate wealth worth Rs 252 crore in 2012 and had sold a property worth Rs 72 crore mounting his total property wealth to Rs 324 crore in the same year. The report has been calculated based on a review of company filings, land records and interviews with property experts.
The report says that Priyanka Gandhi’s husband Robert Vadra had started buying properties from 2009 and the value of them rose six times going up to Rs 300 crore.
It also adds that the 44-year-old Vadra has only pursued education till high school but despite it and no experience in property development amassed a large real-estate portfolio. ‘Mahesh Nagar’s name appears on land office documents as the facilitator for land deals for India’s politically powerful Gandhi family. Over four years, from 2009 to 2012, Nagar bought and sold tracts of land in Rajasthan on behalf of Vadra’, the report says.
The report says that Mahesh Nagar also bought land for Vadra’s brother-in-law and Sonia’s son Rahul Gandhi in Haryana in 2008. Nagar keeps a low profile and people do not know a lot about him. He told WSJ that he has never met the Gandhi family ever but has performed land dealings for them.
Meanwhile, Robert Vadra’s spokesperson said that it’s a political conspiracy to malign Vadra’s name and all dealings have been conducted through a legal process.