Firm 'favoured' by Virbhadra gave Rs 1.99 cr easy loans to his children's company too
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A businessman who gave loans to Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh and his wife allegedly in return for favours to his firm also gave Rs 1.99 crore as interest-free, unsecured loans to a company owned by the son and daughter of the Congress CM — Maple Destinations and Dreambuild Pvt Ltd.
BJP leader Arun Jaitley has accused Virbhadra of granting an extension to Venture Energy and Technology, promoted by Vakamulla Chandrasekhar, for executing a hydel project in the state soon after coming to power in 2012 as quid pro quo for a Rs 1.5 crore-loan to Virbhadra's wife Pratibha and a Rs 2.4 crore-loan to Virbhadra.
The project contract given to the firm in 2002 had been cancelled in 2004 for delay in execution but had got four extensions before the Virbhadra government gave it a fifth one. Jaitley has also alleged that Pratibha and her two children had become shareholders in a group company of Chandrasekhar.
Filings with the Registrar of Companies (RoC) accessed by The Indian Express show that Virbhadra's son Vikramaditya Singh and daughter Aprajita Kumari, own 95 per cent and 5 per cent respectively of Maple.
The company was started in 2011 and its balance sheets for 2011-12 and 2012-13 show that Chandrasekhar and his Tarini Sugar and Distillaries Ltd had given Rs 49.99 lakh and Rs 1.5 crore respectively as loans to Maple.
The spokesman for Virbhadra refused to comment when reached by The Indian Express.
Chandrasekhar denied any wrongdoing in the controversy and defended his transactions with Virbhadra and his family as legitimate business links. But he did not refer to the loans given to Maple.
In his letter to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, Jaitley had alleged that Pratibha Singh got an unsecured loan from Chandrasekhar's Tarini Infrastructure. He also alleged that Pratibha, Vikramaditya, Aprajita and Virbhadra's officer on special duty A P Singh are shareholders in Tarini Infrastructure, a claim that is confirmed by RoC filings.