Ashok Khemka, the IAS officer who raised objections and cancelled a land deal involving Sonia Gandhi’s son-in-law Robert Vadra, has said he believed Vadra had conducted both “criminal behaviour” as well as “ethical misconduct” in the transaction.
“The evidence is contained in the report itself and let’s not elaborate on the evidence on this show. But the cheque prima facie does not belong to the company and that requires a greater criminal investigation and if the charge is held to be true let the criminal court decide upon that matter,” he said in an interview to Karan Thapar’s Devil’s Advocate, telecast on CNN-IBN.
He said the cancellation of mutation of the Rs 58-crore deal between Vadra’s company with realty giant DLF was not based on mere supposition and “the truth had to be established” through investigation.
He said the transaction was a sham. A cheque issued by Vadra was not encashed and Vadra had issued a cheque of R7.5 crore, while he had only R1 lakh in his bank.
“The evidence is that he had only R1 lakh in his account and against R1 lakh, he could not have issued a cheque of R7.5 crore and if the cheque was issued, if that were true, and if the transaction was at arms length principle, then why wouldn’t Omkareshwar property deposit the cheque. Therefore the word used was ‘it is likely’.”
Khemka had reported to the Haryana government that the whole deal done by Vadra in the purchase and sale of prime land, measuring 2.7 acres, in Shikohpur village in Gurgaon district was based on “false” documents, including a fictitious cheque, and was a “sham sale”.
Khemka said he was well within his rights to cancel the land mutation after he had been transferred from his post as director general (land holdings and consolidation) on October 11 last year.
“I relinquished charge on October 15 and I had all the right to function as such till October 15. I had the right to use those powers. If my right was not there, the DLF or Robert Vadra’s company could have approached the high court with these very facts and could have obtained a moral setting aside of the order,” he said.