National Herald case: ED summons Rahul Gandhi on June 13
The Enforcement Directorate (ED) has issued fresh summons to Indian National Congress (INC) MP Rahul Gandhi to appear before it on June 13 in a money laundering case pertaining to the National Herald newspaper. On Wednesday, the ED summoned Congress chief Sonia Gandhi and Rahul. However, the Wayanad MP had asked for time to appear as he was not in the country.
Why does this story matter?
The high-profile case came to light in 2013 when Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Subramanian Swamy filed a complaint before a trial court. He accused top Congress leaders of cheating and breach of trust in the acquisition of Associated Journals Limited (AJL) by Young Indian (YI). The National Herald newspaper was founded by Jawaharlal Nehru along with other freedom fighters in 1938.
Gandhi isolates herself after testing COVID-19 positive
Separately, on Thursday, the Congress chief isolated herself after testing positive for COVID-19. She had developed a mild fever and some symptoms. However, party spokesperson Randeep Singh Surjewala clarified that as of now that wouldn't affect her appearance before the ED on June 8. While Gandhi is required to appear before the ED on June 8, Rahul was summoned on Thursday.
What do we know about the money laundering case?
The case in which the Gandhis have been summoned relates to accusations of fraud and theft of funds in the purchase of the newspaper. They are accused of obtaining the National Herald assets by purchasing the former publisher of the newspaper, Associated Journals Limited (AJL), through Young India Limited, in which they had an 86% share.
What did IT Department's assessment say?
Following the complaint, the Income Tax (IT) Department also began investigating the case. According to the department, Rahul's shares in YI would result in an income of Rs. 154 crore, rather than the initially estimated Rs. 68 lakh. It has already issued a demand notice to YI for Rs. 249.15 crore for the financial year 2011-12.
How did Congress react to summons?
"The BJP is using puppet agencies to intimidate political opponents. National Herald has a history that goes back to independence days," Congress leader and senior advocate Abhishek Manu Singhvi had said. He had claimed that central agencies are targeting all opposition leaders, including Mamata Banerjee and Farooq Abdullah. On the complaint, Singhvi said all corporations enhance their balance sheets by converting loans into equity.Share this timeline