A Delhi court Monday refused to accept an explanation offered by businessman Robert Vadra, husband of Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi, that he stayed in Dubai for a medical emergency in August this year and issued a showcause notice asking him why his fixed deposit (FD) submitted with the court should not be forfeited.
Special Judge Neelofer Abida Perveen of Rouse Avenue court issued the showcause notice to Vadra stating “I am unable to accept the assertion…that the applicant was forced/compelled under the circumstances on account of medical exigencies to stay at UAE while traveling via UAE to UK for the simple reason that itinerary filed on 22.08.2022 and copy of the travel tickets indicates that the applicant all along intended to stay from 25.08.2022 to 29.08.2022 at Dubai then travel to London on 29.08.2022,” the court noted in its order.
Vadra was granted permission to travel abroad to the UK via UAE, Spain and Italy for four weeks on August 12.
Accordingly, he left for the UK on August 25 via UAE and returned to India on September 8 within the stipulated period. Before travel, he filed an undertaking along with an application giving full details of the places of travel, flight tickets and address of places where he stays.
His lawyers had told the court that Vadra “stayed in UAE before embarking on his further journey because he had deep vein thrombosis (DVT) in his left leg and he had been advised to take proper rest between long-haul flights”.
During the trip, since there was inflammation and pain in his left leg, he had to stop and seek medical advice in Dubai on 27 August 27 at the LGA medical Facilitation Centre, meant for medical emergencies of travellers, where he was advised further medical treatment, his lawyers had submitted.
“That his stoppage at UAE during the said trip to the UK was not with the intention to violate any condition imposed nor was there any attempt to mislead, rather, was on account of medical exigencies,” Vadra’s lawyers argued.
Vadra is being investigated by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) in a money-laundering case in which he is accused of illegally acquiring assets abroad from alleged arms dealer Sanjay Bhandari. According to the ED, the case relates to money laundering in the purchase of a London-based property — located at 12, Bryanston Square — worth 1.9 million pounds.