The plot continues to thicken over money laundering accused Yes Bank founder Rana Kapoor purchasing a Rs 2 crore M F Husain painting from Congress General Secretary Priyanka Vadra.
Now, news reports have claimed that the Rajiv Gandhi portrait sold by Priyanka Vadra was not owned by her, but was actually the property of the All India Congress Committee (AICC).
As per a News18 report, Enforcement Directorate (ED) has claimed that Vadra did not own the painting which she ended up selling to Kapoor in 2010. It adds that the Certificate of Provenance for the painting - a key document in determining the painting’s authenticity was signed by Vadra instead of the painter Husain (as is the norm).
The Congress in its defence has claimed that Vadra received the painting presented to Rajiv Gandhi in 1985 as part of her inheritance.
Now an India Today report claims that the ED has started an investigation into the matter. The report adds that Congress leader Milind Deora played a part in convincing Kapoor to purchase the painting for Rs 2 crore - a price incidentally set by Vadra herself.
The report says that, Kapoor despite being an avid art collector with an ownership of over 40 paintings, bucked the trend of seeking an expert opinion to determine the actual value this particular Husain painting.
Incidentally, it is not the only time paintings have found themselves stuck in the middle of political controversies.
It was revealed a few years ago that West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee had sold one of her paintings to the tune of Rs 1.8 crore to Saradha scam kingpin Sudipta Sen, amid allegations of gross over-evaluation.
The CBI last year (2019) while investigating the matter had commissioned a team of experts to determine the real value of Mamata’s paintings.
While the matter brews on, Kapoor has found himself in more trouble after the CBI in its FIR has alleged that he misused his position as the Yes Bank chief to extract undue benefits for him and his family.
The FIR alleges that Kapoor entered in a criminal conspiracy with Dewan Housing Financial Corporation Limited (DHFL) and others to extend financial assistance to DHFL via Yes Bank in exchange of “substantial undue benefit to himself and his family members through the companies held by them”.
An appeal from Swarajya
At Swarajya, we rely on our readers' support through subscriptions to sustain our media platform. Unlike larger conglomerates, we are unable to relentlessly chase advertising money — our model is largely built on your patronage.
Your support has never been more crucial. We work tirelessly to deliver 10-15 high-quality articles daily, ensuring you receive insightful content from 7 AM to 10 PM.
If you believe India's story has to be articulated in a way it has never been done before without shrugging it off, become a patron (or) subscribe now for ₹̶2̶4̶0̶0̶ ₹1999 and get 12 print issues, unlimited digital access for 1 year, a special India that is Bharat T-shirt (Offer ends soon).
We are counting on you!