National Herald case: Notice issued to Sonia, Rahul on Swamy’s plea | india-news | Hindustan Times
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National Herald case: Notice issued to Sonia, Rahul on Swamy’s plea

A Delhi court on Saturday sought response of Congress president Sonia Gandhi, vice-president Rahul Gandhi and four other party leaders on a fresh plea of BJP leader Subramanian Swamy

india Updated: Aug 27, 2016 20:59 IST
HT Correspondent
New Delhi, India - Dec. 19, 2015: Congress President Sonia Gandhi and Vice President Rahul Gandhi come out of Patiala House court after the court granted bail to both the leaders in National Herald Case, in New Delhi, India, on Saturday, December 19, 2015. (Photo by Sushil Kumar/ Hindustan Times)
New Delhi, India - Dec. 19, 2015: Congress President Sonia Gandhi and Vice President Rahul Gandhi come out of Patiala House court after the court granted bail to both the leaders in National Herald Case, in New Delhi, India, on Saturday, December 19, 2015. (Photo by Sushil Kumar/ Hindustan Times)(HT File Photo)

A Delhi court on Saturday sought response of Congress president Sonia Gandhi, vice-president Rahul Gandhi and four other party leaders on a fresh plea of BJP leader Subramanian Swamy seeking certain documents from the party and Associated Journals Ltd (AJL) in connection with the National Herald case.

The Congress president and vice-president, party leaders Motilal Vora, Oscar Fernandes, Suman Dubey and Sam Pitroda, and Young Indian Pvt Ltd (YIL) are accused in the case filed by BJP leader Subramanian Swamy.

Swamy had alleged “cheating” in the acquisition of the Associated Journal Limited (AJL), publisher of National Herald, by YIL — a firm in which Sonia and Rahul each own a 38% stake.

Started in 1938 by Jawaharlal Nehru, National Herald’s circulation and financial health steadily deteriorated over decades, leading to its closure in 2008 with a debt of `90 crore on its head.

Swamy had accused the Congress of loaning this money to AJL and then assigning the debt to YIL for Rs 50 lakh — a transaction the BJP leader said amounted to cheating and a breach of trust.

All the accused have denied the allegations, saying the party’s Rs 90 crore loan to AJL was assigned to Young Indian to revive the publication.

In his application, Swamy has sought documents relating to the loan given by the Congress to the AJL saying these were necessary for the purposes of trial in the case.

He also sought certain documents from the Registrar of Companies (ROC) which were filed by the AJL and papers from the Department of Income Tax (DoT) in relation to income tax returns filed by AJL.

This is not the first time Swamy has sought details of the India’s oldest party in connection with the National Herald case. Earlier this year, the local court - where the trial of the case is going on - had directed the Congress party to submit the details sought by Swamy.

However, the Delhi high court quashed the order saying the order was passed “in a casual manner without due application of mind” and without giving opportunity to the other party to put up their arguments.

It had, however, the high court had said that Swamy could move the trial court again with a similar plea.

The next hearing on the case is October 4.