BJP leader Subramanian Swamy on Friday said the government was “not doing enough” in the National Herald case and wants authorities to “immediately attach” the properties of Associated Journals Ltd (AJL), alleging irregularities in its acquisition by Young Indian Limited (YIL).
“My patience is running out. The government must come forward and immediately attach the properties of Associated Journals Ltd,” Swamy told The Indian Express.
It was based on Swamy’s complaint in 2012 that a Delhi court last week summoned Congress leaders Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi, who hold 76 per cent in Young Indian Ltd, to appear before it on December 19.
“The government is not doing enough in the case. As the appeal against the summons of the lower court to the Gandhis has been completely rejected by high court, it clears the way for the Enforcement Directorate and the Income Tax department to act,” he said.
“Now the government should move forward and immediately attach the National Herald building (in New Delhi). The building was built with help from the then government, which gave land, almost for free, to National Herald.
Young Indian had no business, as a charitable company under Section 25, to acquire controlling shares of the commercial company. They should reverse the deal. I have written a letter to Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley about it,” said Swamy.
According to authenticated documents produced in the lower courts by Swamy, the properties owned by AJL include:
# Seven-storey building with about 1 lakh square feet of office space in New Delhi.
# 3,400-square-yard plot in Bandra.
# 2-acre plot in Lucknow that houses Nehru Bhawan and Nehru Manzil.
# 22,000-square-feet building in Indore.
# 50,000-square-feet property in Bhopal.
According to the documents, the AJL also owns properties in Patna and Panchkula in Haryana.
Swamy says these properties are “in dispute” and “must be attached”. He also wants the ED and I-T department to investigate an alleged money laundering angle in the case.
“How did Young Indian Pvt Ltd, which is a Rs 5-lakh company, get Rs 50 lakh to pay the Congress party? The investigation shows Young Indian got a loan from Doltex Merchandise. In the books of Doltex, Rs 1 core was shown as donation to Young Indian. There was a discrepancy. Young Indian showed the Rs 1 crore payment as zero interest loan and on zero mortgage. It needs to be investigated,” alleged Swamy.
Swamy also claimed that there was “conflict of interest” in transferring of shares.