Rajiv Gandhi Foundation received Rs 50 lakh from Zakir Naik in 2011: BJP trains gun at Congress

BJP spokesperson Sambit Patra alleged that the former promoter of Yes Bank Rana Kapoor, who is facing multiple investigations, sought to keep Congress chief Sonia Gandhi in good humour.

Published: 01st September 2020 02:39 AM  |   Last Updated: 01st September 2020 10:18 AM   |  A+A-

Congress interim president Sonia Gandhi with Rahul Gandhi

Congress interim president Sonia Gandhi with Rahul Gandhi (Photo | PTI)

By Express News Service

NEW DELHI: The BJP on Monday alleged that the Rajiv Gandhi Foundation (RGF) had received donations from individuals facing financial fraud cases

The BJP charged that the RGF regularly received donations from the likes of Mehul Choksi, Jignesh Shah, Rana Kapoor and companies linked to Islamic preacher Zakir Naik.

BJP spokesperson Sambit Patra alleged that the former promoter of Yes Bank Rana Kapoor, who is facing multiple investigations, sought to keep Congress chief Sonia Gandhi in good humour when the UPA was in power, in a bid to get the Padma Award.

“Rana Kapoor diverted Rs  2 crore from the bank to Priyanka Gandhi Vadra for a painting. In 2016, Yes Bank also donated to the RGF,” Patra said.

The BJP spokesperson also alleged that the RGF got a donation of Rs  50 lakh from Shah-led Financial Technologies India Limited (FTIL) in 2011 when the UPA was in power.

“Shah is facing probe in Rs 5,600 crore scam in national spot exchange charges,” added Patra.

Patra, while sharing cheque details, also alleged that Naik’s Islamic Research Foundation donated Rs  50 lakh to the RGF in 2011.

Hitting back at the BJP, Congress chief spokesperson Randeep Surjewala tweeted that a "scared" central government will not answer questions about China's transgressions into our territory, "sinking" GDP numbers and job losses but will instead blame the Congress, its president Sonia Gandhi, RGF (Rajiv Gandhi Foundation), the weather and God.

Targeting the Congress, Patra said Choksi, an accused in the PNB fraud case who has fled the country, donated Rs 10 lakh to the foundation in August 2014 through a company owned by his family while Kapoor, the arrested founder of Yes Bank, donated Rs 9.45 lakh to the foundation in September, 2016.

Naik, a hardline Islamic preacher, had donated Rs 50 lakh in 2011 to the trust, Patra noted and added that the money was returned by the trust to a different account after a controversy broke out.

"Since the main account was under probe, so the Congress returned the money to another account," he said.

Patra alleged that the GVK group, which is being probed for a scam linked to the Mumbai airport, had also supplied 47 vehicles to the foundation for its use between 2011-12 and 2016-17.

Congress leader in Lok Sabha Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury asked as to how these accused managed to flee the country under the BJP dispensation.

"BJP is at the helm of affairs. If the Rajiv Gandhi Foundation has committed any wrong or any legal infirmities are found, then the government is at liberty to do anything," he said.

He then asked as to how many Chinese companies have donated to the PM CARES Fund, and said this also should be investigated.

Patra cited the Supreme Court judgment, which had refused to direct the Centre to transfer the contributions made to the PM CARES Fund to the National Disaster Response Fund (NDRF), and asked Chowdhury to trust the court.

Congress secretary Pranab Jha dismissed the allegations as "plants" and said these are rehashed, old charges.

"We reject them with the contempt they deserve," he said.

(With PTI Inputs)


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