IT quizzes Vadra for 3.5 hours in 'benami' property case
New Delhi, January 5, 2021
A team of the Income Tax department on Tuesday recorded the statement of Congress President Sonia Gandhi's son-in-law Robert Vadra for over three and half hours on the second consecutive day in connection with the "benami" properties case.
However, Vadra once again slammed the government, describing the move as "political vendetta" and questioned the timing of the investigating agencies amid the farmers agitation.
A team of IT department officials arrived around 2.45 p.m. at Vadra's Sukhdev Vihar residence here and recorded his statement for over three and half hours.
On Monday, the I-T team had recorded the statement of Vadra for over nine hours.
According to IT department sources, the team recorded Vadra's statements as he was unable to join the probe during the Covid pandemic.
Speaking to media after the IT department sleuths left from his residence, Vadra said, "I have answered all the questions asked by them and also shared the records of the acoounts."
When asked if the team of the IT department would be coming again on Wednesday, Vadra replied, "I welcome them if they want to come, have some tea with me and find out what they want."
Terming the questionning by the agency as a political move, the businessman said, "It is consistent. It keeps happening to me. Whenever there is an issue around, Robert Vadra crops up."
"If it is not this, it will be something else. When there is an election, when there is something, my name is used. The government wants to digress from the main issues. Rather than all this, they should help the farmers and do something good for the people of the country," he said.
When asked about the details of the "benami" properties, Vadra said, "I have shared all the information with them. I don't have any other information, but it seems that they have much more information than me."
When pressed further if the IT department asked him to write his statement or type, he said that he is a law-abiding citizen and he will follow the instructions of the investigative agencies.
When questioned about his name linked with defence dealer Sanjay Bhandari, Vadra said, "Whatever the queries are, I am here to answer for it. You just cannot claim anything. You cannot say that I went to Taj Mahal, so I own Taj Mahal. You need to have proof."
He further stated that if they want to clarify with Bhandari then they need to question him. "I am here only, I can answer for myself and how I can answer for someone else," he said.
When asked about the Enforcement Directorate (ED) questioning him for over 15 times for over 80 hours, Vadra said, "I have also spoken to ED on everything."
Besides the I-T department, Vadra is also being investigated by the ED under the provisions of Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) pertaining to allegations of money laundering in the purchase of a London-based property at 12, Bryanston Square, worth 1.9 million pounds. It is alleged that the said property is owned by Vadra.