The Enforcement Directorate on Friday carried out searches at the office of Congress President Rahul Gandhi's brother-in-law Robert Vadra in an ongoing probe into the 2012 land deal in Kolayat in Rajasthan, official sources said.
The searches at the Sukhdeo Vihar office began at 11 a.m. ED officials also searched properties belonging to Vadra's associates in Bengaluru. The action came after Vadra ignored fresh summons issued to him late last month.
The official said the agency was also searching the premises of Vadra's close associates in the national capital region and Bengaluru. The agency had issued the latest summons to Vadra as he did not personally appear on November 30 and instead sent his legal representative.
ED officials say that Vadra was wilfully avoiding summonses where his personal appearance is necessary to record his statement in connection with the evidence gathered against Sky Light Hospitality. The agency said that it has the power to take him into custody for questioning under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act.
The ED has been probing an alleged scam in the purchase of land in Kolayat area in Bikaner district.
According to ED officials, Skylight Hospitality purchased 69.55 hectares of land for Rs 72 lakh and then sold it to Allegeny Finlease for Rs 5.15 crore, earning a profit of Rs 4.43 crore. The agency registered a criminal case under the Money Laundering Act in 2015, taking cognizance of the case filed by the Rajasthan Police.
The Congress, meanwhile, has lashed out against the Modi government, saying that an â€śunnervedâ€ť Narendra Modi government was unleashing â€śvendettaâ€ť against Rahul Gandhiâ€™s brother-in-law Robert Vadra, to divert the narrative from the Exit Polls.
â€śSure shot defeat in 5 States unnerves Modi Govt to again use the old tools - unleash revenge & vendetta against Mr. Robert Vadra to divert the narrative. Such cowardice & intimidation will not subjugate either the Congresa Party or the will of people,â€ť Congress chief spokesperson Randeep Surjewala tweeted.