Delhi High Court Reserves It's Verdict over Pleas of Sonia, Rahul Gandhi and Fernandes in National Herald Case

Delhi High Court Reserves It's Verdict over Pleas of Sonia, Rahul Gandhi and Fernandes in National Herald Case

The Delhi High Court during this week on August 16, has reserved its verdict over reopening of tax assessment of Rahul Gandhi, Sonia Gandhi and Oscar Fernandes in connection to the transactions held between National Herald and Young Indian Private Limited.

The court has scheduled to take up the matter again on September 10.

On August 14, the Delhi high court postponed the hearing of the pleas filed by Former Congress President Sonia Gandhi, Rahul Gandhi and party leader Oscar Fernandes, who approached the Court against the reopening of their assessments by the Income tax Department.

The I-T department has launched probe against them regarding tax assessment for the year 201-12 under section 147 of the Income Tax Act, 1961, following a complaint by BJP MP Subramanian Swamy, accusing Sonia Gandhi, Rahul Gandhi and others of cheating, misappropriation of property, conspiracy and breach of trust in the acquisition of assets of the Associated Journals Limited (AJL) by Young India Private Limited company, alleging that the Gandhi's are major stakeholders of around 38% in Young Indian Pvt Ltd, which came into existence  in 2010 and further contended that in 2011, AJL approved the transfer of an unsecured loan of Rs. 90 crore from the All India Congress Committee(AICC) at zero interest with company's all ninety million shares of Rs. 10 each to Young Indian.

The I-T department contended that Rahul Gandhi persistently chose not to disclose that his post of director at the Young India which would have provided him an income to the tune of Rs. 150 crore instead of earlier assessed income of Rs. 68 lakh.

During the hearing, ASG Tushar Mehta argued, ".... if company earns profit, it’s a taxable entity. True and full details of sister concerns not disclosed.  We have sufficient material and documents against all."

Nonetheless, Senior Advocate P Chidambaram appearing for Young Indian-Associated Journals Ltd. countered ASG's arguments saying, “Reassessment procedure against Young Indian alleged that it is a bogus transaction.......Huge speculation on increase in price can’t be made. This is a complete case of non application of mind. All this enhancement of value in share price is a mere speculation.”

On August 8, the Court refused to grant interim relief Rahul Gandhi, challenging the reopening of his tax assessment for 2011-12 by the Income Tax Department.

The IT department has also issued a notice to Young India Private Limited simultaneously, for escapement of income to the tune of Rs. 249.15 crore for the assessment year 2011-12.

In March, the Delhi High Court had asked Young Indian Pvt Ltd. to deposit Rs. 10 crore in the Rs. 249.15 crore income tax proceedings against it. Though, YIL has claimed that it was a charitable company and does not have any income and the I-T department has raised a mistaken demand of Rs. 249 crore for the assessment year of 2011-12.

All India Congress committee (AICC)
Associated Journals Limited (AJL)
Delhi High Court
Income Tax Department
Rahul Gandhi
Sonia Gandhi
Young India Company
Young India Private Limited Company (YIL)

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