New Delhi: National Security Advisor (NSA) Ajit Doval‘s son Vivek Doval on Monday moved Delhi’s Patiala House Court in a criminal defamation complaint against Congress leader Jairam Ramesh, reported ANI. Others against whom the complaint has been moved are the editor-in-chief of Caravan magazine and one of its reporters. (Also read: Plea Alleges CBI Illegally Tapped Doval’s Phone)
The court would hear the matter on Tuesday. As per the report published in Caravan, Vivek ran a hedge fund in the Cayman Islands. The report said that the fund was registered soon after the Centre’s demonetisation move in 2016. He is a UK citizen and lives in Singapore.
While Vivek was cited as a director of the hedge fund, another director reportedly figures in the infamous Paradise Papers which is a leaked database of over 13 million documents on offshore entities.—as the director of two firms, both registered in the Cayman Islands.
According to the report, yet another director of the hedge fund is a regional director for the Lulu Group International which runs one of the fastest growing chains of hypermarkets in West Asia.
The report gave enough ammunition to the Opposition to seek an investigation by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) into FDI inflows from the tax haven.
Communist Party of India (Marxist) leader Sitaram Yechury hit out at Prime Minister Narendra Modi and also demanded answers from Doval. At a press conference, Congress leader Jairam Ramesh cited RBI data and said that during 2000-17, India received Rs 8,300 crore FDI from the Cayman Islands.
“Within 13 days of Prime Minister Modi announcing demonetisation, on November 21, 2016, Vivek Doval opened a hedge fund called ‘GNY Asia’ in the Cayman Islands, which, according to a report of the BJP’s 2011 committee, is a known tax haven,” Ramesh said to media.
However, Ramesh did not substantiate his allegations with any documentary evidence. He also suspected that Vivek’s hedge fund was involved in siphoning money only to bring it back to the country after demonetisation.
“There is concrete proof that members of their government are involved in doing the same, especially after demonetisation,” he was quoted as saying.
Meanwhile, Vivek has strongly refuted all charges levelled against him in the Caravan report. He said the said company was started in October 2013 and was registered in India in August 2016. He said there was no way he could have known in 2013 that the Centre would go for demonetisation.
Vivek also denied the allegation that his company helped his brother Shaurya. He also said that his company had no links with the Saudi royal family.
On the allegation that while Ajit Doval filed a report on black money and called the Cayman Islands as a tax haven, his own son ran a hedge fund business there, Vivek said his business had nothing to do with black money and was completely legal. “It is like comparing oranges and apples,” he said.
Vivek also took a serious note of the report calling his family the D-Company and said, “Within minutes, our whole family’s name was dragged into this…they tried to belittle us in front of our father…we are law-abiding citizens of this country.”
He added that he had a 19-year career of which, he has spent the most time in the UK. He said he is an OCI (Overseas Citizen of India).