NEW DELHI: The Congress today attacked the Modi government over the FIR against Robert Vadra and former Haryana chief minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda for alleged irregularities in land deals and said it was an attempt to divert attention from issues like Rafale agreement and demonetisation.
An FIR against Vadra, who is Congress leader Sonia Gandhi's son-in-law, Hooda and two companies has been registered at Kherki Daula police station in Gurgaon, Manesar Deputy Commissioner of Police Rajesh Kumar had said on Saturday.
As assembly elections in four states and next year's general elections draw near, the "fake news factory and dirty tricks department of Modi government-BJP act maliciously in pursuit of their vicious propaganda", Congress' communications in-charge Randeep Surjewala said in a statement.
He accused the government of serving a new set of "manufactured lies" through "false and fake FIRs against political opponents".
This, Surjewala alleged, was being done to divert attention from the Rafale deal, the demonetisation "scam", the 12 lakh crore "loot" through hike in prices of petrol and diesel, and the rapidly falling rupee and "failing" economy, among other things.
The FIR said Vadra's company Skylight Hospitality Pvt Ltd purchased 3.5 acre of land in Gurgaon's Sector 83 from Onkareshwar Properties for Rs 7.50 crore in 2008, when Hooda was the chief minister and also held the portfolio of the Town and County Planning Department.
Later, Skylight Hospitality sold this land to realty major DLF at a price of Rs 58 crore, after procuring a commercial licence for the development of the colony with the influence of Hooda, the complainant, Surinder Sharma, alleged.
The company thus made a profit of about Rs 50 crore, according to the allegation which has been trashed in the past by Vadra.
Surjewala said facts showed that Vadra's Skylight Hospitality Private Limited purchased 3. 5 acres of land on January 28, 2008, in the notified commercial zone of Gurgaon's village Sikohpur through a registered sale-deed for Rs 7. 95 crore including stamp duties as per the prevailing collector rate.
"In accordance with the prevailing government policy for grant of licence, a commercial licence for 2. 5 acres was granted on December 15, 2008. Commercial colony licence charges of Rs 7. 43 crore and renewal charges of Rs 73 lakh were also paid.
Thus, total amount paid for purchase of land and statutory charges comes to Rs 16. 11 crore," he said.
After nearly five years, this land was sold by Skylight to DLF for Rs 58 crore on September 18, 2012, he added.
"Even on this amount, Skylight/Mr Vadra paid an additional tax of Rs 8 crore. Thus, a total amount of Rs 24. 11 crore was paid in statutory charges/taxes against the receipt of sale price of Rs 58 crore," Surjewala said.
The licence remains valid till date and has not been cancelled on account of violation of any rule or law or policy for grant of licence, he said, adding that the allegations are "false and fabricated".
"The BJP and Khattar government are spreading canards against Shri Bhupinder Singh Hooda and Mr Robert Vadra qua a small licence for merely 2. 7 acres out of total licences running to over 11,000 acres in Gurgaon on account of sheer malafides," Surjewala alleged.