Touted as the 'National Herald Scam 2', the TNCC Trust scam again points fingers at Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi over irregularities in appointment of Congress leaders Motilal Vora and CR Kesavan as trustees. Not much is known as to what is happening with the property worth atleast 20,000 crores of the TNCCCT.
Tamil Weekly Thuglak Editor S Gurumurthy has set the ball rolling by alleging “a la National Herald fraud” was simmering in Tamil Nadu Congress Committee Charitable Trust ( TNCCCT) that has properties worth Rs 20,000 crores. He dropped the bombshell that former Congress party president Rahul Gandhi’s trusted aide Kanishka Singh has taken accounts documents, deeds and transferred trust money.
He, in a series of tweets, compared it with the National Herald fraud. He said the latest was “the ten times of the National Herald scam”. A case pending in courts saying Sonia Gandhi and her clans took over 2,000 crore of properties belonging to official organ National Herald. Gurumuruthy said he was at loss to understand what Tamil Nadu Congress old Trustees former union ministers G K Vasan and Jayanathi Natarajan were doing. Both of them quit the trust in 2014 after the revival of Tamil Maanila Congress (TMC), a split group formed by late G K Mooppar in 1996 protesting Congress party’s decision to align with AIADMK to contest elections.
Gurumurthy said “in 2009, the trustees were called to Delhi by Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi and asked them to sign some papers. They did not know what the papers were. They were called to Delhi only by Rahul Gandhi. At that time they were trying to take over National Herald paper and were trying to confiscate the state properties”.
He in a tweet said , “now I am told that they were also trying to build a multi-storey building on the arterial Anna Salai property at the Teynamet Congress grounds. Now I understand that work has been given to a Mumbai based architect while the builder is from Chennai”. Gurumuruthy said Congress party has signed a MoU to give 40 percent of the property to the builder and 60 percent to the party with five floors for unnamed persons in the proposed 18-storey multi commercial complex.” Some say it is a 7 star hotel.
In February 2015, Congress party president Sonia Gandhi nominated party’s national treasurer and former CM of Madhya Pradesh Motilal Vohra and C R Kesavan, great-grand son of late C Rajagopalachari, popularly known as Rajaji, as trustees in the vacancy caused by the leaving of Vasan and Jayanthi Natarajan. He pointed out that “according to the TNCC Trust deed, it is only the elected TNCC Executive working Committee which can appoint the trustees. E M Sudharsana Natchiappan (who is one of the lifetime trustees) asserts the same. Why then Sonia appointed Vora and Kesavan as trustees and on what authority? Was Natchiappan sleeping when she made illegal appointments?
Gurumurhty said “Sonia seems to have appointed new trustees to carry out the National Herald II type of operation. Matters getting worse. Will trustees Sudharsana Natchiappan, Kesavan explain what is happening to the Rs.20000 crore worth property. Why Sonia Gandhi appointing the trustees instead of TNCC executive committee?”.
“TN Congress has only properties worth 20,000 crores; not the party. Vohra , who can’t read a number due to his advanced age, is a trustee but Kanishk Singh controls the TNCC trust. Kanishk Singh, Rahul Gandhi’s right hand, has taken over the trust documents and accounts. None of the trustee seems to be aware of the accounts” asserts Gurumurthy. Party seniors opined that “neither the AICC nor the Congress president has any role in it”.
Currently the trust has TNCC Chief K S Alagiri, C R Kesvan, Motilal Ora, Yasoda, Sudharsana Nachiappan and two more are its trustees
Organiser tried to contact one of the trustees C R Kesavan who did not pick up the phone calls and reply to WhataApp messages that sought his remarks. Likewise Former Union Minister Jayanthi Natarajan GK Vasan were not answering to phone calls but former’s aides gave flimsy reasons. Sr.Vice President of TMC and former MP, B S Gnanadesikan told your correspondent “as per trust deeds TNCC president of the day, as the ex-officio chairman, with seven other trustees being nominated by the “elected working committee” of the party”. He, one of the trusted associate of party chief GK Vasan, “ said during the freedom struggle K Kamaraj, who feared arrest and confiscation of 60,000 cash which he had in possession, handed it over to Hindu Kasturi Srinivasan of Hindu group. When Kamaraj was imprisoned, Kasturi Srinivasan told him a piece of land on Mount Road was coming up for sale. With permission from Kamaraj he bought the land for 1.85 lakhs with his own money of 1.25 lakhs. After his release, he handed over the land to Kamaraj. The 149 grounds is estimated to be around to be 1,500 crore as per present market value. TNCC trust, one of the richest in Bharat ( it alleged the trust has worth 15,000-20,000 crore properties ) was founded by former Congress president Kamaraj and Kasturi Srinivaan. Doyens like Kamaraj, Sathyamurthy, Chellapandian, C Subrmaniam, P Ramachandran, G K Moopanar were its trustees”.
Gnanadesikan said “trust properties can’t be used for any other purpose other than what is in the trust by laws which are mainly charitable activities like education and medical assistance. Till we were in the trust, there were no direct interference from AICC or from Raghu Gandhi’s office. We are not aware what happened after we left the trust. During our tenure, we made a proposal to build a commercial complex , a dining hall which were dropped due to non- availability of funds. There is no ban on building structures. Income generated from the shops, mostly given to party cadres, is only in few lakhs. Full day rent for the Kamaraj Hall is only Rs 90,000 which is the cheapest in the city. The rentals, which were fixed some 20 years back, are not revised to match with the current market conditions and there were arrears also. During our tenure, not a single pie was spent for party. In fact, TNCC had objected Motilal Vohra’s nomination to the trust as he was an outsider”.
Old party veterans recalled that in 1950s, TNCC bought a lot of properties with aim of building district party offices and to get financial support to the party functionaries from rent realization. The famous party Avadi conference in 1955, properties were bought in the key are of the city namely Teynampet.
TNCC chief K S Alagiri said Gurumurthy’s charges are baseless. The trust is functioning as per by laws and helping poor. Sources close to the TNCC party says there are chances of trust money were being transferred to Delhi. But Gnanadesikan said all the revenues are to br deposited in bank accounts. Without the trust’s resolution to meet charitable purposes the money can’t be withdrawn.
Sources privy to the trust citing balance sheets and draft minutes of the trustees passed by circulation date October 12, 2011 clearly showed mis- appropriation of funds. It said “ at least 85 percent of the income from the properties ought to be used for charitable purposes. To repair Sathyamurthy Bhavan and the auditorium, Rs.48.77 lakh was spent which is yet to be approved by the meeting of trustees. As per the audited balance sheet of the trust as on march 31,2011 only of Rs 6.36 crore income in the financial year only and 20 lakh was spent towards education and medical grants”.
TN BJP president L Murugan has urged the government to order a thorough probe by the Income tax department over alleged irregularities in TNCCC Trust. For the cash starved Congress which was the at the country’s helm for over 60 years, opulent TNCCCT is considered as a financial lifeline for the AICC. Now you know reasons why so many fight to lead the party in the state despites party’s poll share has come to abysmal low.
“Who have permission to bury the G K Moopanar mortal remains at the land belonged to trust? Was it not amounted to land grab” questions a tweet. Another requested the government to take over the TNCCT before Congress thugs loot the properties systematically. Another brought Gurumurthy’s attention charges leveled by TNCC chief K S Alagiri that he had conquered Thuglak from Cho.