Zee Media Bureau/Ritesh K Srivastava
New Delhi: The Enforcement Directorate on Friday began a preliminary probe into allegations of cheating and criminal breach of trust by Congress president Sonia Gandhi and her son Rahul for acquiring ownership of now-defunct daily National Herald.
The case against the Congress chief and her son has been filed by senior BJP leader Subramanian Swamy.
According to reports, ED inquiry has been registered "just to establish whether there is a case or not."
The ED inquiry comes on a day when the Delhi High Court is due to hear the petitions moved by Sonia Gandhi and her son and party vice president Rahul Gandhi in connection with the National Herald case.
Sonia Gandhi and her son Rahul Gandhi were summoned by the court in June after BJP leader Subramanian Swamy filed a complaint accusing them of cheating and misappropriation of funds in acquiring ownership of now-defunct daily National Herald.
Congress leaders have alleged vindictiveness by the new BJP government, which took power in May after winning the national election.
In his petition, the senior BJP leader had alleged misappropriation of assets worth Rs 2000 crore of the National Herald newspaper. Swamy had also accused Sonia and Rahul and others of conspiring to cheat and misappropriate funds by just paying Rs 50 lakh by which Young Indian obtained the right to recover Rs 90.25 crore which the AJL had owed to the Congress party.
Swamay alleged that in the present scenario over Rs 2,000 crore worth of assets also got transferred to YI, whose 76 per cent of shareholding vests with Sonia and Rahul Gandhi and the remaining shareholding of 24 per cent vests with the other accused.
The Congress is hoping that the Gandhis who have been summoned for misappropriation of funds will get relief.
Among other leaders who have received summons include Congress leader Motilal Vora and senior Congress member Oscar Fernandes. "We have received a notice from the court. We will answer it in the court," said Oscar Fernandes.