Senior BJP leader Kirit Somaiya on Monday sought a detailed inquiry by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) into the alleged involvement of Robert Vadra, the son-in-law of Congress President Sonia Gandhi, in the purchase of a “benami” or proxy-owned mansion in London in 2009.
Somaiya on Monday wrote a letter to the ED Director, Karnal Singh, in this regard and sought a detailed probe into the matter. The BJP leader in his letter quoted media reports saying that a benami or proxy-owned property in London by Mr Vadra. “The media report quotes a government report stating that alleged arms dealer Sanjay Bhandari is holding a house at 12 Ellerton House, Bryanston Square, London,” said Somaiya in his letter.
Mr Vadra, however, denied the charges. Vadra’s lawyers have said he “does not own directly or indirectly, a house — as quoted in media reports as No. 12, Ellerton House, Bryan-ston Square, London” — and that Vadra and his assistant “have not enter-ed into any transaction of a financial nature with Sanjay Bhandari and are not even aware that Bhandari is involved in any defense transaction”.
The finance ministry is reportedly probing if Mr Vadra is involved in purchase of the ‘benami’ mansion in London in 2009 or not. Last month, investigative agencies raided 18 premises owned by Sanjay Bhandari. Two preliminary reports prepared by investigative agencies reportedly state that Mr Vadra and his executive assistant allegedly sent several emails discussing payments and renovations for the London home bought for 19 lakh GBP (Rs 19 crores) in October 2009 and sold in June 2010.
According to reports during investigations Sanjay Bhandari was specifically questioned whether Mr Vadra was the beneficiary of the sale of the Bryanston Square property in London.