New Delhi: The Enforcement Directorate (ED) raided the Delhi office of Robert Vadra, the brother-in-law of Congress president Rahul Gandhi, and the residences of two associates in an unexpected move on Friday. The businessman’s legal team reacted by terming the raids as an attempt to plant “manufactured evidence” that can be fraudulently used against him.
Vadra, son-in-law of UPA Chairperson Sonia Gandhi, is being investigated by the ED in connection with a land deal. Vadra’s advocate Suman Khaitan claimed that the ED officials raided “close associates” and business partners of Vadra in Delhi without even showing any search warrants.
“They (Centre) have not found any evidence since last four-and-half years. So they wanted to come, lock the door, plant evidence today. They will lose elections and to divert attention, they will claim that they found the evidence (which is actually) manufactured and planted,” Khaitan told media here.
“On the basis of law, can they conduct raids without letting us inside? They have locked up people of Sky Light Hospitality inside. They are not allowing them to come out and allowing us in. We have been knocking the door since morning, but they are pretending as if they can’t hear us. Is this the rule of law? Is this Nazism? Is this Indian democracy? What I will do if they will plant evidence inside? We don’t know who these people are,” he added.
Khaitan said that the officials raiding properties of Vadra’s close aide neither showed any search warrant nor revealed their identities.
“We are presuming it is ED. In the morning, when our lawyers asked them about their identity, they refused to say anything. Is the Indian Constitution not being destroyed? Two days back, I went to the ED and submitted 600-pages documents. Before that on November 26 also I gave the same documents. Since last four-five years, he (Vadra) has been summoned eight to 10 times. Every time we have gone,” Khaitan said.
“Did they say they want to interrogate him? No. Did they say he is an accused? No. Did they say I need you as a witness? No. They said you please come and give the documents. I have given them the same. Now, do they want to see his face? If you want to interrogate him or accuse him, then they need to mention that in summon,” he added.
Khaitan also informed that Vadra was not present at the spot during the raids.
He said a newspaper had reported that that three summons had been served on Vadra by the ED but “we have received none.” Vadra had earlier this week alleged that the corruption probe against him is a result of a political witch-hunt aimed at “besmirching his dignity and reputation”.
In a Facebook post, Vadra further claimed that the authorities are well aware that there is no case against him and the proceedings are a mere “media circus to distracting the public.