‘Missile & radar update…’: Rahul quotes news report to target govt over Adani
Congress MP Rahul Gandhi has alleged that the Adani Group's meteoric rise in business was directly linked to the BJP government at the Centre.
Congress MP Rahul Gandhi on Wednesday launched a fresh attack on Narendra Modi government, this over a news report which claimed that a key investor of Adani Group is a co-owner with the business conglomerate in a defence firm.
“India's missile & radar upgrade contract is given to a company owned by Adani & a dubious foreign entity called Elara. Who controls Elara? Why is India's national security being compromised by giving control of strategic defence equipment to unknown foreign entities?” Gandhi tweeted.
According to an Indian Express report (article beyond paywall), ELARA India Opportunities Fund is a venture capital fund and among the top four entities registered in Mauritius which hold shares in Adani Group companies. The report claims that the group reduced its share in the past three years, but the holdings in three Adani firms add up to over ₹9,000 crore.
The report claims that Elara along with the Adani Group happens to be a promoter entity in a Bengaluru-based defence firm Alpha Design Technologies Private Limited. This defence company was set up in 2003 and works closely with the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) and Defence Research Development Organisation (DRDO). The defence firm reportedly has a ₹590 crore contract with the Union defence ministry in 2020 to upgrade and digitise the ageing Pechora missile and radar systems.
The report quoted by Rahul claim that Adani Defence and Elara own a majority of 51.65 per cent in this defence company. An Adani Group spokesperson was quoted as saying that Adani Defence invested in Alpha Design in 2018 and had a 26 per cent stake. Elara, according to this spokesperson, has a minority stake of 0.53 per cent while Vasaka Promoters and Developers is the largest promoter.
However, the report claims that it is Elara which holds a 44.3 per cent stake in Vasaka Promoters and Developers at ₹40 crore, becoming the single largest shareholder in November 2018.