The Delhi High Court has issued notice to Robert Vadra on an Enforcement Directorate plea seeking cancellation of his anticipatory bail in a money-laundering case. The probe agency has challenged a trial court order which granted him anticipatory bail.
Mr Vadra has been asked to reply to the Enforcement Directorate or ED plea by July 17.
The court also sought response of Manoj Arora, an employee of Robert Vadra's Skylight Hospitality and a co-accused in the case, on the agency's plea seeking cancellation of the anticipatory bail.
Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, representing ED in the court, said Robert Vadra was not cooperating in the investigation and the trial court had not discussed the gravity of the offence in its order.
Robert Vadra, brother-in-law of Congress president Rahul Gandhi, is facing allegations of money laundering in purchase of a London-based property at 12, Bryanston Square worth 1.9 million pounds (over Rs 17 crore).
Enforcement Directorate has contended that if Mr Vadra is granted the blanket protection of bail, there is a possibility that he may tamper with evidence and influence the witnesses in the case and that the trial court had failed to appreciate that he was a highly-influential person.
The probe agency has claimed that Mr Vadra was "non-cooperative" and in spite of being given several opportunities to come clean on his alleged role in the case, he remained evasive.
Robert Vadra recently approached a trial court seeking permission to travel abroad and his plea is pending. The trial court, while granting anticipatory bail, had directed him not to leave the country without prior permission and also to join the probe as and when called by the investigating officer.
According to the ED, it had lodged the money-laundering case against Manoj Arora after his role came up during the probe of another case filed by the Income Tax department under the newly-enacted Black Money Act and tax law against absconding arms dealer Sanjay Bhandari.
It has alleged that the London-based property was bought by Sanjay Bhandari for 1.9 million pounds and sold in 2010 for the same amount, despite incurring an additional expense of approximately 65,900 pounds on its renovation.
ED said it has received information about various new properties in London which allegedly belong to Vadra, including two houses worth 4-5 million pounds each and six flats.
With additional inputs from PTI