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The Rajiv Gandhi Foundation, which has been caught up in a massive controversy over its financial links with China, is back on news again after a sensational disclosure that the Congress governments in the past had changed the rules of allotment of government land in Lutyens Delhi to benefit the Gandhis and the trusts controlled by the family.
A report by Times Now stated that an ongoing high-level probe on the Rajiv Gandhi Foundation has exposed a convenient arrangement that saw Gandhi family virtually taking over government lands through various trusts including the RGF.
Earlier, the Ministry of Home Affairs had set up an inter-ministerial committee to probe various violations by the Rajiv Gandhi Foundation, Rajiv Gandhi Charitable Trust & Indira Gandhi Memorial Trust.
The Times Now report also stated that the rules for the land allotted by the then Indira Gandhi-led government in 1975 for the construction of the Congress party headquarters was eventually violated and altered for the benefit of the Gandhi family and the trusts managed by them. The Congress party, however, did not construct the headquarters at the two-acres land but changed the land allotment rules to lease government lands for free to Gandhis.
The nearly two-acre land, which was allocated for the construction of the AICC office to build ‘Gandhi Bhawan Trust’ was altered by various Congress governments for over four decades, which was later handed over to Sonia Gandhi-led Rajiv Gandhi Foundation for free.
According to Times Now, the first alleged violation of terms happened in December 1976 under Indira Gandhi. The Congress, after renaming the ‘Gandhi Bhawan Trust’ to ‘Jawahar Bhawan Trust’ leased more lands during the Indira Gandhi government. The land was given in 2 tranches, once 4736 square yards and then 4500 square yards were granted, as per the Times Now report. The land was initially meant for the Congress party, but ended up under the control of the Nehru Gandhi family, though some clever tweaks.
Different Congress governments, one beneficiary, the Nehru-Gandhi family
In September 1988, during the Rajiv Gandhi government, the terms of allocations of the land were changed again, from the Congress party to the Jawahar Bhawan Trust (JBT), to allow the perpetual lease of the land and also for the construction of an office of the JBT. The government land was now transferred to a trust managed by the party for free, violating the land allotment rules.
Again in 1995, during the Congress government led by PV Narasimha Rao, the land allocated to JBT was rented out to another entity called ‘Rajiv Gandhi Foundation’ for free.
The fourth violation of the land allotment rules by the Congress government to favour the Gandhis came in May 2014, when the UPA government, days before losing power, gave permission to Sonia Gandhi-led Rajiv Gandhi Foundation to sub-rent the two-acre plot to four organisations, which are mostly controlled by the Gandhi parivar.
Congress used government-owned RGF land to give platform for Anti-India propaganda
Further, the Times Now report also stated that the Congress party organisation Seva Dal was wound up from the land to make way for the Rajiv Gandhi Foundation, which then gave space to Anti-national elements such as Anti-Hindu riots accused Umar Khalid, far-left members of Anti-India brigade Kanhaiya Kumar, former SIMI terrorist SQR Ilyas etc.
The conspirators of the Anti-Hindu riots, members of various anti-Hindu front were time and again given space by the Sonia Gandhi-led foundation through the controversial Rajiv Gandhi Foundation.
Sonia Gandhi-controlled Rajiv Gandhi Foundation received funds from China
Recently, shocking details had emerged wherein it was revealed how Sonia Gandhi-controlled Rajiv Gandhi Foundation had received funds from the Chinese government during the UPA era under the garb of charities.
Last month we had reported how the Rajiv Gandhi Foundation had received funds from not just the Embassy of China but also the Government of China not once but at least thrice between 2005 and 2009. One donation amounted to Rs 10 lakhs and another one amounted to Rs 90 lakhs was given by the Chinese to the Sonia-Gandhi controlled Rajiv Gandhi Foundation.
The Annual Statements of the Rajiv Gandhi Foundation had also revealed a far more sinister agenda as it turned out, the Chinese government had not only donated to the Rajiv Gandhi Foundation in the year 2006 but in the subsequent years as well.
It is important to note that Sonia Gandhi is the Chairperson of the Rajiv Gandhi Foundation. Since the year 2005, Rahul Gandhi and Priyanka Gandhi Vadra were the trustees.
The significant disclosure had come at a time when the Congress party was caught over its secret deals with the Communist Party of China (CPC) back in 2008. There have been serious allegations against the Congress party and its interim chief Sonia Gandhi over receiving funds from not only China but also for diverting public money for her private foundation. Documents had also revealed that Sonia’s loyalist Manmohan Singh had tried to allocate Rs 100 crores to the Rajiv Gandhi Foundation in the Union Bidget of 1991-92 when he was the finance minister.