INDIA. Delhi: As part of a continuing investigation into money laundering, the Enforcement Directorate (ED) conducted various raids on Tuesday in Delhi, including the National Herald newspaper’s headquarters.
The news comes days after Sonia Gandhi, the president of the Congress, and Rahul Gandhi, the party’s leader, were questioned by the investigation team about the National Herald money laundering issue.
Officials from the investigation agency claim that the searches are being done per the penal provisions of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) to “collect further evidence on the trail of funds.”
About nine months ago, a trial court took cognizance of the Income Tax (I-T) department investigation that was conducted as a result of a private criminal complaint submitted by former Bharatiya Janata Party MP Subramanian Swamy in 2013. This investigation is to look into alleged financial irregularities under the PMLA.
The petitioner had filed a complaint with the court and claimed that Associated Journals Limited (AJL), which published the daily National Herald, had been defrauded of its assets by Young Indian Pvt Limited (YIL). Sonia Gandhi and her son each owned 38 per cent of the shares in YIL.
Rahul Gandhi and Sonia Gandhi are among the YIL’s promoters. Swamy claimed that the Gandhis misused money and committed financial fraud, alleging that YIL merely paid Rs. 50 lakh to secure the right to reclaim Rs. 90.25 crores AJL owed to Congress.