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‘If I go to Taj Mahal, Centre will think I am there to buy it’: Robert Vadra on I-T interrogations

Vadra said, "23,000 documents were taken away from my office. They've more information about me than I have in my office today. Every question they asked was answered clearly. There is no tax evasion."

A day after Income Tax officials grilled Robert Vadra on Benami property case, the Congress president’s son-in-law on Wednesday said that the IT sleuths took away 23,000 documents from his office. He further added that there has been no tax evasion and that his business is completely transparent.

Speaking about the raids and interrogation by the IT Department, Vadra said, “23,000 documents were taken away from my office. They’ve more information about me than I have in my office today. Every question they asked was answered clearly. There is no tax evasion.”

Vadra was asked to join the Income Tax Department’s inquiry at the agency’s office on Monday and Tuesday. But, he refused to travel to the IT office citing COVID-19 restrictions. Consequently, the Income Tax department visited the premises of Robert Vadra, son-in-law of Congress President Sonia Gandhi, to record his statement in connection with its probe against him under the benami assets law.

If I go to Taj Mahal, they’ll think I have gone there to buy it: Vadra

Raising questions on the repeated interrogations by the Income Tax Department, Robert Vadra remarked that he could not go anywhere or do anything without drawing the suspicions of the Centre. He asserted that if he paid a visit to Taj Mahal, the centre might surmise that he has gone there to buy the monument.

“I cannot do anything, cannot go anywhere. If I go to Taj Mahal, they will think I have gone there to buy Taj Mahal. Government has cornered in their issues, they find ways to divert the issues,” said Robert Vadra.

IT sleuths visit Robert Vadra’s office on Monday and Tuesday

The Income Tax Department officials on Tuesday reached the residence of Robert Vadra in Delhi’s Sukhdev Vihar to question him regarding the Benami properties matter. The total value of these properties, allegedly purchased by Sonia Gandhi’s son-in-law, between 2005 and 2010, is believed to be 12 million pounds.

On Monday, IT sleuths interrogated Vadra for about 8 hours and recorded his statement under the Prohibition of Benami Property Transactions Act. According to the reports, Vadra was grilled in connection with the purchase of some land parcels by a firm linked to Vadra in Bikaner in which the Enforcement Directorate had filed a money laundering case in 2015. The case is linked to the properties he allegedly purchased in the United Kingdom through arms dealer Sanjay Bhandari.

While talking to reporters Monday evening, Vadra labelled the grilling by the IT officials as a political vendetta. “There is nothing to hide…the truth will prevail,” said Vadra.

Vadra accused of alleged possession of some undisclosed assets in the United Kingdom

As per the ED, Vadra was beneficially controlling the £ 1.9 million London property. Vadra had also allegedly executed renovation work for the same and arranged for funds. Absconding defence dealer Sanjay Bhandari, Vadra’s aide, allegedly purchased the property for £ 1.9 million and sold it to a Vadra-controlled firm for the same amount after allegedly spending £ 65,900 on renovating it. The ED maintained that Bhandari was not the actual owner of the property, but it was beneficially owned by Vadra. Vadra is accused of money-laundering.

Besides this, there are two more properties worth 4 million pounds (around ₹ 37.42 crores) and 5 million pounds (more than ₹ 46.77 crores). Six other flats are also suspected to be owned by Mr Vadra, according to the Enforcement Directorate

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