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Wednesday, October 4, 2023

Land Deal Case: Basement flood destroyed Robert Vadra’s business records, Union Bank tells SIT | Chandigarh News

CHANDIGARH: The crucial financial transaction records for the years 2008 and 2012 of Robert Vadra’s companies were destroyed by “water flooding the basement of the branch,” Union Bank of India told a special investigative team of Haryana police (FEEL).
The SIT is investigating an FIR registered against Congress leader Sonia Gandhi’s son-in-law Vadra and former Haryana CM Bhupinder Singh Hooda in an alleged corruption-ridden property deal that became an issue during the 2014 parliamentary election. The BJP used it as a symbol of corruption to attack Congress.
Documents accessed by TOI indicate that the SIT had written to UBI requesting information about the inflow of funds into the accounts of Skylight Hospitality and Skylight Realty, companies in which Vadra held management positions. The bank responded on May 26 this year, stating that the records for 2008 and 2012 had been destroyed due to a flood in the basement of its branch.
The SIT then sent notifications to UBI to determine if the records of other companies were also destroyed. A notice was also sent to the bank’s New Friends Colony branch in New Delhi on June 20 to investigate the circumstances surrounding the destruction of relevant records belonging to Skylight Hospitality and Skylight Realty.
The bank’s response is awaited. The investigation into this case began on September 1, 2018, when the BJP-led government in Haryana registered an FIR naming Hooda, Vadra, a real estate giant. DLFOnkareshwar Properties and Skylight Hospitality as defendants in a land deal.
SIT has been investigating the allegations surrounding the deal. The recent addition of IAS officer Mukul Kumar, former head of town planning and Rera Panchkula member Dilbag Singh, and a legal adviser to help the SIT shows the seriousness with which the CM Manohar Lal Khattar government is taking the case.
One of the key allegations in the case is that Vadra’s Skylight Hospitality purchased 3.5 acres at Shikohpur in Gurgaon from Onkareshwar Properties in February 2008 for Rs 7.5 crore. Later, after obtaining a business license, the company reportedly sold the same property to DLF for Rs 58 crore. It is further alleged that in exchange for the land deal, the Hooda government allocated 350 acres in Wazirabad in Gurgaon to DLF.
However, the Manesar tehsildar reported that Skylight Hospitality had sold the 3.5 acres to DLF Universal Limited on September 18, 2012 and that no rules or regulations were broken during the transaction.

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