This Article is From Dec 08, 2015

'Not Afraid, I Am Indira Gandhi's Daughter-In-Law': Sonia Gandhi to NDTV

Sonia Gandhi and her son Rahul will appear in a Delhi court on December 19 in connection with the National Herald case.

New Delhi: Sonia Gandhi was unusually combative today as she spoke on the National Herald case in which she and her son Rahul Gandhi are to appear in court on December 19.

"I was asked in the morning by your colleague if I was afraid. I replied that I am the daughter-in-law of Mrs Indira Gandhi and I am not afraid of anybody or anything," the Congress president said, speaking exclusively to NDTV.

The Gandhis have to appear in a lower court to face allegations that they illegally acquired property worth Rs. 5,000 crore belonging to the National Herald newspaper. The petitioner in the case is the BJP's Subramanian Swamy, who has accused the Congress leaders of cheating.

The Congress blocked all work in both houses of Parliament to protest against what it calls "persecution" of its leaders by a member of the ruling party.

The government denied any role in the case and accused the Congress of mixing up a court decision with politics.

"Who doesn't know that she is Indira Gandhi's daughter-in-law? We just want her, if anything and if it is required by the court, to appear in the court and say so and with proof. With the proof that no penal provisions have been violated. Why is she afraid of the court?" said Union Commerce Minister Nirmala Sitharaman.

The "National Herald case" is based on Mr Swamy's allegation that Congress leaders gave Rs. 90 crore as loan from tax exempted money to the National Herald newspaper set up in 1938 by Jawaharlal Nehru, India's first prime minister and Rahul Gandhi's great-grandfather.

The Congress leaders are also accused of illegally acquiring the newspaper for just Rs. 50 lakh with the aim of grabbing its properties in Delhi worth thousands of crores.

In 2008, the newspaper shut down after struggling for decades with mismanagement and poor earnings.