Businessman Robert Vadra appeared before the Enforcement Directorate (ED) on Thursday in connection with a case of alleged money laundering related to properties in the UK worth 1.9 million pounds. Vadra, the brother-in-law of Congress chief Rahul Gandhi, was grilled by the ED for over five hours on Wednesday.
The ED is probing whether Vadra purchased a property at Bryanston Square in London through absconding arms dealer Sanjay Bhandari. Sources told The Indian Express that Vadra was questioned about his association with Bhandari and financial transactions on Wednesday. The ED reportedly provided documents to link him with the properties during the interrogation.
This is the first time that Vadra is appearing before any probe agency in connection with alleged dubious financial dealings.
Vadra has denied the allegations of possessing illegal foreign assets and termed them a political witch hunt against him. He said he was being “hounded and harassed” to subserve political ends.
Vadra’s lawyer Suman Khaitan, meanwhile, maintained that his client was innocent and that he has been incorrectly charged. “All charges against him are wrong. We will cooperate with the agency 100 per cent,” Khaitan said.
Vadra had been accompanied by his wife and Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi Vadra on Wednesday. Outside the ED office, she told reporters, “I stand by my family… everyone can see what is happening.”
Last Saturday, a Delhi court had granted Vadra interim bail in the case and directed him to join the ED’s probe. It had also asked him not to leave the country without permission.