Amid protests by Congress party leaders and workers, Rahul Gandhi walked twice on Monday to the Enforcement Directorate (ED) office in New Delhi in connection with a money laundering probe linked to the National Herald newspaper. He has been asked to appear again before the agency officials on Tuesday.
Gandhi, who entered the headquarters of the federal agency in central Delhi around 11.10 am, was put to questioning about 20 minutes later after he finished some brief legal proceedings and marked his attendance.
He was allowed by the ED to leave for lunch around 2:10 pm and he returned around 3:30 pm. The probe pertains to alleged financial irregularities in the party-promoted Young Indian that owns the National Herald newspaper.
Senior ED officials who interrogated him refused to give out any details on the ground that it is a preliminary investigation and they are yet to examine Congress President Sonia Gandhi, who will be questioned on June 23 since she could not turn up at an earlier date of June 8 due to Covid-19 infection. She has been in the private Gangaram Hospital since Sunday for Covid-19-related complications, but her office said she was improving.
As his senior leaders and workers protested, the police had heavily barricaded all roads leading to the AICC headquarters from where the march was to begin as also all areas around the India Gate.
The police were checking the identity of the Congress Working Committee members and MPs by barricading the front gate and allowing only those whose names were provided by the party office. A large number of workers, however, entered the AICC headquarters from the backside residences of the staff until the police realised and blocked even that entry.
Some protesters were wounded in the police action to prevent them from gate-crashing the ED headquarters along with Gandhi, who walked with a huge crowd to reach there for deposition.