National Herald order: Sonia-Rahul must explain HC indictment, says BJP

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New Delhi, Dec 22 (IANS) In the wake of the Delhi High Court order asking the National Herald newspaper’s publisher to vacate the Herald House within two weeks, the BJP on Saturday hit out at UPA Chairperson Sonia Gandhi and party President Rahul Gandhi, saying they have been misuing public property.

“The court has found questionable as to how public premises and land worth Rs 5,000 crore including the property build on it could surreptitiously be transferred to the family trust for a consideration of Rs 50 lakh. Sonia Gandhi and Rahul must reply…,” Union Cabinet Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad told the media here.

On Friday, the high court dismissed a plea of the Associated Journals Ltd (AJL) challenging the Centre’s October 30 direction asking the National Herald newspaper’s publisher to vacate the Herald House within two weeks.

Justice Sunil Gaur said if the House is not handed over to the Land and Development Officer within two weeks, the government can initiate proceedings under the provisions of Public Premises Act.

“Corruption by them (Sonia Gandhi and Rahul) has been exposed by the court. HC’s decision is a proof how government property is being looted. Even after Supreme Court’s verdict, Congress continues to rake up the Rafale issue aggressively, but now it is their turn to rely to the high court’s order,” the Minister added.

The government inspected the premises a few months ago and found that the area allotted to AJL was not being used for the publication of newspaper for the past 10 years, the court was told.

“The way in which public property, a costly land, is being abused (sic) by the family trust of Sonia Gandhi and Rahul, along with their family retainers, has been confirmed by a judgement of the Delhi High Court. The allotment…was for the only purpose of running the newspaper,” Prasad noted.



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