Stung by social activist Arvind Kejriwal's allegations of corruption, real estate major DLF Saturday vehemently denied it had advanced any unsecured loan to Congress chief Sonia Gandhi's son-in-law Robert Vadra.
DLF went on to deny that it sold any of its assets to Vadra at throwaway prices, or the existence of a quid pro quo in the business transactions.
"We wish to categorically state that the DLF has given no unsecured loans to Vadra or any of his companies," DLF said in a statement released Saturday, a day after IAC's Arvind Kejriwal levelled these charges against Vadra, who is the husband of Sonia Gandhi's daughter Priyanka.
"At no stage was a property ever sold to the Skylight Group (in which Vadra is a director) below the then offered price to all customers," the statement said.
"DLF vehemently denies any quid pro quo in its transactions with Vadra and his group of companies," it added.
Referring to Kejriwal's press conference and the allegations raised against the firm, DLF said: "We would like to state that the business relationship of DLF with Robert Vadra or his companies has been in his capacity as an individual entrepreneur on a completely transparent and at an arm's length basis."
It added: "Our business relationship has been conducted to the highest standards of ethics and transparency, as has been our business practices, all around."
On the charge of DLF advancing unsecured, interest-free loans to Vadra, the company said that Rs.65 crore was given as business advances for the purchase of land as per standard industry practice.
"To reiterate, at no stage was an interest-free loan ever given to the Skylight Group. There were two sets of business advances against purchase of property, one of which amounting to Rs.50 crore resulted in a satisfactory conclusion of purchase of commercial land, and the second advance of Rs.15 crore was fully refunded," it said.
"Since no unsecured loans were provided by DLF, the question of acquiring the properties from DLF loans does not exist. It is not unusual for parties which sell land to DLF to choose to reinvest the consideration received or part thereof in projects being developed by DLF," it added.
On the question of selling its properties to Vadra or his companies at throwaway prices, DLF said: "There is no question of offering, let alone selling, Vadra or his group companies any property at a throwaway price. The allegation that seven apartments in Magnolias were sold for Rs.5.2 crore only is also completely baseless."
"At no stage was a property ever sold to the Skylight Group below the then offered price to all customers. The gains, if any, made by Skylight Group, by subsequent re-trading would be similar to the gains made by those customers and in line with applicable market price appreciation experienced by all DLF customers in general," it added.
On the Saket Hilton Hotel deal, DLF said Skylight had contributed Rs.35 crore for a 50 percent stake in the hotel based on independent valuation, which arrived at an enterprise value comprising an equity value of Rs.70 crore.
On DLF obtaining land in Haryana, which is ruled by the Congress, the company "vehemently" denied any quid pro quo in its transactions with Vadra and his group of companies.
"All business transactions between DLF and Vadra and his group of companies have been conducted with complete transparency and are fully accounted for as per the applicable laws and accounting standards. There is no question of utilisation of unaccounted black money or illicit funds as alleged. We categorically and vehemently reject this allegation," DLF said in its statement.
"We trust we have clarified the issue adequately and with the facts, as they are. The allegations raised against DLF are therefore completely baseless and untrue," it added.
"We have never received any undue benefit from any state government or any government authorities in any part of India. DLF hopes that with this clarification, controversies of these baseless allegations stands cleared," the statement said.