A Supreme Court bench headed by Chief Justice of India (CJI) Ranjan Gogoi today (5 April) passed a stay on the eviction order directing Associated Journals Limited (AJL) to vacate its premises at ITO, New Delhi, reports Times of India.
A notice has also been issued to the central government’s Land and Development Office (L&DO) on AJL’s plea against the eviction order.
AJL’s appeal is against a Delhi High Court judgment upholding the eviction order against it.
The high court in its ruling observed that “the dominant purpose” for leasing out the Herald House no longer existed. The court also ruled that AJL’s acquisition by Young India was done in a questionable manner.
It was reported in November that the Centre had started to evict AJL offices in Delhi but the court had then provided relief to the publisher by instructing that the status quo be maintained. The Centre had asserted that no publishing activity was happening at the ITO premises and the building was only being used for commercial purposed.
In 2011, a firm named Young India was established and it offered loans to AJL to settle its debts. In return, AJL would transfer all of its shares to the former. Congress President Rahul Gandhi and Sonia Gandhi are both rumoured to hold 38 per cent stake each in the company, Young India.
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