Thiruvananthapuram: In what is likely to cause a major embarrassment to the Congress party, a leading contractor on Wednesday filed an FIR against Sonia Gandhi over non payment of dues.
According to initial reports, the FIR was lodged by M/S Heather Constructions Managing Partner in Kerala.
The other leaders who have been named in the FIR include Rajiv Gandhi Institute of Development Studies Chairman Ramesh Chennithala, former Kerala chief minister Oommen Chandy and Kerala Pradesh Congress Committee president VM Sudheeran.
In his complaint, the Heather Constructions Managing Partner Rajeev alleged that he was given a contract for building the Rajiv Gandhi Institute of Development Studies in Thiruvananthapuram. However, the Kerala Pradesh Congress Committee (KPCC) now says that it has no money for project, he further alleged.
Importantly, the project to build the Rajiv Gandhi Institute of Development Studies was commissioned by former KPCC president Ramesh Chennithala.
Sonia Gandhi had inaugurated the institute in October 2005. The Congress chief had asked the KPCC to settle the dues after the company sent a legal notice. The company, however, claims that it did not receive any money following which an FIR was filed.
Heather Constructions has also threatened to move court over 'non payment of dues amounting to Rs 2.8 cr over construction of Rajiv Gandhi's statue at Neyyar Dam', said ANI.
Reacting to the news, Congress spokesman RS Surjewala later said, ''Contractor had filed a civil suit, the issue has been nearly sorted out. Within 24 hours, all parties will sit together and settle the issue.''
Defending Congress chief, Surjewala added, ''Neither any criminality is involved nor any default of payment has taken place. Only a small payment of Rs 2 crores is pending.''
The development comes days after the Congress was ousted from power in Kerala after the recently concluded assembly elections in the state.
The development is also indicative of growing infighting among various factions of Kerala Congress, which have criticised each other for the defeat in the assembly elections here.
Sources close to Congress party claim that the dues were not cleared because of an intra-party feud in the Kerala unit of the Congress.