Sonia Cries ‘Conspiracy’ Over Robert Vadra Benaami Property Charge

Congress President Sonia Gandhi called the ongoing investigations against her son-in-law Robert Vadra a ‘conspiracy to create a Congress-free Bharat’. The Ministry of Finance is currently probing whether a controversial arms dealer Sanjay Bhandari bought a “benami” or proxy-owned mansion in London for Robert Vadra in 2009. The inquiry in this matter was initiated after it was revealed that several emails on this matter were exchanged between Robert Vadra, his executive assistant Manoj Arora, and controversial defence dealer Sanjay Bhandari.

According to this report –

“Enforcement agencies that raided 18 premises owned by Sanjay Bhandari last month stated in its two preliminary reports that Robert Vadra and his executive assistant sent several emails discussing payments and renovations for the London home (12 Ellerton House, Bryanston Square) bought for 19 lakh GBP (19 crores) in October 2009 and sold in June 2010, reported NDTV. Vadra and Arora sent several emails to Sumit Chadda, a relative of Mr Bhandari’s based in London.

Sanjay Bhandari was specifically questioned whether Robert Vadra was the beneficiary of the sale of the Bryanston Square property in London. He did not deny the same but avoided a direct answer by stating that he would he able to confirm it by referring it to sale deed kept with his lawyer in London,” one of the reports stated.

“There was an email dated 4.04.2010 in which Sumit Chadda reported the progress of work of renovation and repair work to Robert Vadra and asked for reimbursement of expenses,” said the report. The report further quotes Vadra replying to Chadda saying “He would look into the issue” and added that his “secretary” Manoj will be “in touch”.

Sanjay Bhandari, the owner of Offset India Solutions (OIS), is currently being investigated for financial violations linked to 35 suspected shell companies between 2009 and 2014. In 2014, Intelligence Bureau advised Defence Ministry not to sign any deal with Bhandari, however his company OIS won a deal to supply parts for 38 combat aircraft that Bharat is buying from Dassault Aviation.

Robert Vadra is also under the lens of investigators for his controversial land deal in Haryana. The probe is under-way to find out whether Vadra used political influence to get special discounts and other benefits. Vadra has been denying all the charges against him calling it political vendetta by ruling BJP.”

Robert Vadra is already under investigation for several multi-crore corrupt land deals which were carried out during Congress rule in the states of Haryana, Rajasthan, Delhi. A 2012 listing of his suspicious dealings is as below –

Robert Vadra Corrupt Land Deals

Robert Vadra the ‘private citizen’ to Vadra the Congressman?

In the past, whenever a new charge would emerge against Robert Vadra for his shady land deals, the Congress’ standard response was that Vadra being a private citizen, the party had no locus standi to comment on him, and the ‘law would take its own course’. But it appears that Vadra has now shifted to the center stage in Congress affairs, and this rare reaction by Sonia to one of the numerous corruption cases for which she and her family are being investigated, suggests that the Congress high command is rattled about this latest charge against Vadra.