The Enforcement Directorate (ED) on Monday evening confiscated and provisionally attached former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi portrait painting purchased by Yes Bank founder Rana Kapoor from Congress General Secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra.
The federal probe agency seized the portrait from Kapoor's house in Mumbai and took it to its Mumbai Zonal office where he is being kept in custody.
ED confiscated the painting of Rajiv Gandhi under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) and suspects it to be bought with the proceeds of crime.
The painting which is a portrait of Rajiv Gandhi was painted by artist MF Hussain was bought by Kapoor in the year 2010 for a whopping Rs 2 crore. The sketch was given to Rajiv Gandhi in 1985 at the Congress party's centenary celebration ceremony.
Back in 2010, Priyanka Gandhi had also written a thank you letter to Kapoor that reads, "Thank you for purchasing the portrait of my father, Shri Rajiv Gandhi painted by Shri MF Hussain which was presented to him in 1985 at the ceremony of Congress Party's centenary celebrations and is present in my ownership and possession."
"I acknowledge receipt of a letter dated June 3, 2010, as well as your payment by cheque dated June 3, 2010, drawn on your HSBC account of Rs 2 crore, representing full and final payment toward subject painting," she added in the letter.
Business Today has seen a copy of the letter.
The ED had placed Kapoor under arrest after being interrogated for around 15 hours at the wee hours on Sunday. He has been sent to ED's custody till March 11. The probe agency had registered a fresh Enforcement Case Information Report (ECIR) on Saturday against Kapoor before placing him under arrest. The ECIR was registered following the CBI FIR against Kapoor, DOIT Infra Ventures LTD, Kapil Wadhawan and DHFL.
"The fresh complaint was registered only upon discovery and enough evidence of the two suspicious transactions which were thoroughly checked and verified through Kapoor, his family members, relatives and other beneficiaries involved," ED said in an official statement.
"The legal team worked till late night with Joint Director Satyabrata Kumar discussing legal issues and challenges. Kumar and the legal advisor left the office only at 4 am after Kapoor was placed under arrest," it added.
According to ED officials, Yes Bank invested Rs 3,700 crore in short-term debentures of scam-hit DHFL (Dewan Housing Finance Ltd). In return, DHFL allegedly "paid kickback of Rs 600 crore" to Kapoor and his family members in the form of loans to DoIT Urban Ventures (India) Pvt Ltd, officials said.
DoIT Urban Ventures Ltd is a company allegedly held by his family members and promoter-director of DHFL Kapil Wadhawan.