'Bentley mine, not Big B's gift to son'
The row over Amitabh's reported gift to Abhisekh picks up pace with Singh's claim, reports Sutirtho Patranobis.Updated: Feb 09, 2007, 03:48 IST
It's the car that's been driven by controversy. And on Thursday, the controversy over the Bentley, reportedly presented by Amitabh Bachchan to son Abhisekh, picked up pace with Samajwadi Party leader Amar Singh claiming he was its actual owner.
Singh said he had imported the car from the United Kingdom at a cost of Rs 1.5 crore earlier this week after completing all formalities and paying the requisite taxes. He threatened to take legal action against Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit and Transport Minister Haroon Yusuf over a transport department official's statement on Thursday that he could be prosecuted for giving Bachchan's Mumbai address as his own for temporary registration. He denied reports that the Bentley was given by Bachchan to his son on the latter's birthday.
Singh told a press conference that since he was close to the Bachchans, there is always a room for him in their Mumbai home 'Jalsa'. "I imported the car from London by paying 100 per cent customs duty through a cheque signed by me. My PAN number is also in the documents. I also have a cupboard full of clothes kept at Jalsa. Amitabh's house is my house and I stay there whenever I am in Mumbai," he said.
He added that the only person who could oppose this claim was Bachchan himself. "Let Amitabh Bachchan deny this. I am ready to face the consequences," he said, asking Yusuf and Dikshit to make Bachchan deny the statement.
Luxury cars have been occupying headlines and attracting the prime time slot lately. Television channels had flashed news and visuals of Abhisekh and Aishwarya Rai in the Bentley earlier this week, claiming it to be a birthday gift from his father.
Also, a Rolls Royce Phantom presented by director Vidhu Vinod Chopra to Bachchan has caught everyone's attention. Chopra was apparently so overwhelmed by Bachchan's portrayal of a pivotal royal guard in a Rajasthani palace of intrigues in his film Eklavya that he rewarded the actor with a Phantom. The car costs a cool Rs 3.5 crore.