Editorial

Pain in the neck

By Nagaland Post | Publish Date: 2/7/2019 11:19:49 AM IST

 When Priyanka Gandhi Vadra finally and officially joined the Congress as general secretary in-charge of Eastern UP, it was both good and bad news for the party. The good news was that Priyanka will inspire the rank and file of the party which is expected to pay dividend in bolstering the party organisation. The bad news is she carries with her a problematic baggage called Robert Vadra, her husband. Robert Vadra has been in the news for the wrong reasons since Arvind Kejriwal attacked Congress with a virulent and merciless campaign in which Robert Vadra’s shady land deals became the staple food for then opposition and the media. On the day Priyanka joined work at the AICC headquarters, posters of Rahul and Priyanka were removed allegedly by rival party workers. At a press conference, BJP spokesperson Sambit Patra described the posters of Rahul and Robert Vadra as “two criminals” who were out on bail- Rahul in connection with the National Herald case and Robert Vadra in connection with money laundering case. The BJP spokesperson’s description is not only flawed but a defamatory statement meant to harm the reputation of both Rahul and Robert Vadra. They are not criminals since they have not been convicted of the offences they have been booked for. They can at best be described as accused persons but certainly not criminals. Robert Vadra will hounded by the Enforcement Directorate and other agencies to inflict mental stress on Priyanka as she takes up the responsibility of leading the Congress in UP in the run up to the Lok Sabha polls. That Robert Vadra will be placed in the dock once Priyanka formally joins politics, was expected long back since BJP and political rivals would not be able to resist using his dubious deals as ammunition. Robert Vadra’s business sky rocketed from a few lakh rupees capital to a whopping Rs.300 crore within a span of ten years. How Robert Vadra could buy prime land with cent per cent unsecured loan from a national bank is also a question. He bought a prime land worth around Rs.7.5 crore with the bank loan and then sold it to a real estate company for Rs.58 crore. He again received a generous unsecured and interest free loan from the same real estate company with which he bought land. The land soon enough, got notified by the State Governments then ruled by the Congress and which resulted in a big boost in the land price. Exploiting the Gandhi name, Robert Vadra purchased lands in states ruled by the Congress at throw away price and then re-sold them at premium to various firms. He is already being probed by the ED in connection with two PMLA cases - one related to land deals in Bikaner in Rajasthan and another linked to arms dealer Sanjay Bhandari and illegal acquisition of overseas assets. Robert Vadra is also being accused of having made money through routing kickbacks in petroleum and defence deals during the previous UPA government. He has also, allegedly bought benami properties in London and other places. Robert Vadra is the Albatross around Priyanka’s neck and how she fights on two fronts, will determine the future of her family and her political career.

Launched on December 3,1990. Nagaland Post is the first and highest circulated newspaper of Nagaland state. Nagaland Post is also the first newspaper in Nagaland to be published in multi-colour.

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