National Herald case: Delhi Court asks for balance sheets of AJL, Congress

Accepting Swamy’s plea, Metropolitan Magistrate Lovleen sought the balance sheets of INC and AJL for the year 2010-11.

Written by Kaunain Sheriff M | New Delhi | Published:March 12, 2016 12:56 am
BJP leader Subramanian Swamy. BJP leader Subramanian Swamy.

A Delhi Court Friday summoned the balance sheets of Indian National Congress (INC) and Associated Journals Pvt Ltd (AJL) that was sought by complainant and BJP leader Subramanian Swamy in connection with the National Herald case in which Congress president Sonia Gandhi and vice-president Rahul Gandhi have been named as accused.

Accepting Swamy’s plea, Metropolitan Magistrate Lovleen sought the balance sheets of INC and AJL for the year 2010-11.

“At the very outset, this court must observe that the documents referred to in the present application belong to two separate entities — INC and AJL. By no stretch of imagination, the documents could be referred to as ‘personal documents’ of accused persons… Accordingly, it is directed that the balance sheet of INC pertaining to the year 2010-2011 be summoned on filing of process fee for the next date of hearing,” the magistrate ordered. The court will now hear the matter on March 21.

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The order came after Swamy, in his plea, sought summoning of balance sheets, receipts and payments accounts, income and expenditure statements for 2010-2011, 2011-2012 and 2012-2013 of the INC and AJL. He had argued that these records were necessary to establish the method adopted by the accused for the purpose of extending loans to acquire AJL through Young India (YI).

Meanwhile, the court, while summoning the documents, said, “The complainant submits, upon inquiry, that the assignment of loan was done by the accused persons on December 27, 2010. In view thereof, the relevant records pertaining to the assignment of above-said loan by the Congress Party to YI are necessary for a just disposal of this case.”

“This court finds force in the submissions made by the complainant as under valuation of belongings of AJL is also one of the causes for which the accused persons are facing trial,” it added.

In the National Herald case, Swamy has alleged that Congress leaders were involved in cheating and breach of trust in the acquisition of AJL by YI, as assets worth crores had been transferred to YI. He has alleged that YI, which has Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi on its board of directors, took over assets of the defunct print media outlet in a “malicious” manner to gain profit and assets worth over Rs 2,000 crore. Apart from the Gandhis, Congress treasurer Motilal Vora, general secretary Oscar Fernandes, journalist Suman Dubey and technocrat Sam Pitroda were also named in the case.

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