RG Appears Before ED For Day 4 As Congress Protests ‘Vendetta Politics’

| Updated: 20 June, 2022 2:28 pm IST
Congress leader Rahul Gandhi

 

NEW DELHI: Former Congress president Rahul Gandhi on Monday appeared before the Enforcement Directorate (ED) for the fourth day of questioning in connection with the alleged money laundering case involving the National Herald.

After more than 31 hours of questioning over three consecutive days till June 15, the Gandhi scion was asked to appear on Friday. He had requested the ED to differ the date, citing his mother’s ill health. The agency had then accepted his plea.

Sonia Gandhi was admitted to Delhi’s Sir Ganga Ram Hospital on June 12.

As Rahul answers ED’s questions, the Congress party is holding countrywide protests against what it calls “vendetta politics” and the new military recruitment scheme ‘Agnipath’.

ALSO READ: ED Accepts RG’s Request, Allows Him To Appear On Monday In NH Case

Earlier today, former Union minister Ajay Maken accused the BJP government at Centre of pressurizing the party through the financial probe agency.

At a press conference, Maken said, “The Congress party headquarters has been turned into a fortress. Police entered the party office and thrashed several party leaders and workers, an act which brought shame to our democracy.”

The party has also accused the government of planting false news to malign the image of Rahul and the party.

Taking a dig at the Centre, Maken said the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) and the ED are running “glow and lovely scheme” to harass Opposition leaders.

He alleged that the Central agencies are unleashed against Opposition leader who criticize government policies. But when these leaders join the BJP, they are given clean chit by these agencies, he said.

“When he was in Congress, Himanta Biswa Sarma faced ED and CBI summons in Louis Berger and Saradha scams. However after he joined the BJP and became Assam CM, now there is no ED or CBI summons against him. Similar is the case of former Karnataka BS Yediyurappa, who faced ED heat along with his son. But in last eight years, there is no update on ED case against him,” he added.

He further said, “ED is probing 5,422 cases out of which 98 per cent cases were registered in last eight years.”

The legal department of the Grand Old Party has send a notice to the Central government seeking a copy of the FIR registered by the ED in the National Herald case.

“Which is the ‘Scheduled Offence’ under PMLA, for which the ED has started investigation? Which police agency has registered an FIR in respect of ‘Scheduled offences’? Do you know that without ‘Scheduled Offences’ and FIR, ED has no jurisdiction to initiate investigation under PMLA,” Congress’ Vivek Tankha asked in the  notice.

Besides Rahul, the ED has also summoned Congress interim chief Sonia Gandhi in the same case on June 23.

Sonia Gandhi’s son-in-law Robert Vadra, in an interview to The New Indian, had said that the government is using a 10-year-old case to call “a member of my family who matters in this country”.

He said summoning Sonia would be wrong. “She’s ailing and everybody knows it. I know she’s getting better but the doctor says that she needs to remain in the hospital,” Vadra had said.

ALSO READ: Wrong Of ED To Call Mrs Gandhi Of ‘Family That Matters Most’, Says Vadra

The ED registered a fresh case about nine months ago after a trial court in Delhi took cognisance of an Income Tax Department probe initiated on the basis of on a private criminal complaint filed by former BJP MP Subramanian Swamy in 2013.

Swamy claimed that Young Indian Limited (YIL) “took over” the assets of the defunct National Herald in a “malicious” manner to gain profit and assets worth over Rs 2,000 crore. The BJP leader also alleged that YIL had paid Rs 50 lakh to obtain the rights to recover Rs 90.25 crore which AJL owed to the Congress party.

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