CENTRAL BUREAU OF INVESTIGATION
1. PROGRESS REPORT NO. : 1
AND DATE. : 23.02.1993
2. CASE NO. AND DATE : RC.1/93-SIU(XII)
OF REGISTRATION : Dt.08.07.1993
3. NAME OF THE ACCUSED : M/s . Southern Arts,
Exporters of Indian Handicrafts
10-D, First East Main Road,
Madras and Unknown Others.
4. OFFENCES : U/s 120-B IPC and Sec.25 (1)
r/w Sec.3(1) of Antiquities and
Art Treasures Act, 1972
5. NAME OF THE IO. : Shri Hari Kumar, Inspr/SIU.
6. NO. OF WITNESSES :
That, M/s. Southern Arts, Exporters of Indian Handicrafts, 10-D, First Main Road, Shenoy Nagar, Madras, exported 34 items from the port of Madras to Mr. Guide Zanderige Via 24 Maggie 437126 Verona, Italy, in connivance with the officials of Customs of Madras, Illegally against the provisions of the Antiquities & Art Treasures Act, 1972. On inspection of the aforesaid 34 items by Dr. C. Margbandhu, Director (Exploration), ASI, New Delhi at Pisa, Italy at the instance of Department of Culture, Ministry of Human Resources Development, New Delhi, 19 items were found to be “Antiquity”. In view of above, the instant case was registered against the Exporter (and unknown others).
During the fortnight under review, the IO Submitt plan of Action in the case. A copy of the same is enclosed herewith. Special Look-out notices have also been sent to NCRB/New Delhi and to the Director General of Police of Southern States along with the photocopies of photographs of the items, which are lying presently at Pisa, Italy with the Customs Authorities, requesting them to check their records under their jurisdiction with a view to find out, if any report regarding the theft of any the item, is reputed, to them. Interpol/CBI/New Delhi has been requested to move to IP/Rome for the seizure of the consignment, in question, lying with Customs authorities in Pisa, Italy and restitution of the same to India thereafter. The matter has also been reported to Secretary, Department of Culture, Ministry of Human Resources & Development, Shastri Bhavan, New Delhi so that they may inform to the Embassy of India at Rome, Italy, for necessary direction to Customs Authorities in Pisa, Italy, for not releasing the consignment to the Importer. The IO has proceeded to Madras in connection with the investigation of this case and the progress shall be reported to HO on his return.
10. CD (S) NO. & DATE (S) : C.D. No.1 dated .07.1993
ON WHICH PR BASED : C.D. No.1 dated .07.1993
C.D. No.1 dated .07.1993
C.D. No.1 dated .07.1993
11. PENDING ACTION : A detailed Plan of Action
Submitted by the IO, is
DETAILED PLAN OF ACTION SUBMITTED IN CASE RC.1/93-SIU(XII) FOR PERUSAL.
1. To take immediate steps for retrieval of the case property from Italy by moving the Interpol as well as Indian Embassy in Rome.
2. To send reference to Interpol for conducting part investigation in Italy regarding the examination of the Importer.
3. To visit Madras:-
i. information to be collected from the exporters regarding the procurement of the antiquities, their supplier etc. and also to elicit information regarding the conspiracy if any with ASI or customs. Collect the original shipping bills and other documents from the Customs Madras and also examine the concerned appraiser who passed the consignment.
ii. To examine the ASI officials in Madras to know whether the consignment was referred to them by customs authorities and also to know whether the exporters ever obtained the non-antiquity certificate for the items they exported, and also examined the concerned officers.
iii. To examin concerned CHA in Madras who facilitated the shipment of the consignment. Further to seize the copy of the concerned shipping bill available with the CHA and also to examine the concerned persons, procuring their, specimen handwriting and signature etc. to prove that the shipping bill was prepared by them (For GEQD Reference).
iv. To interrogate the partners or the proprietors of the exporter i.e. M/s. Southern Arts, Exporters of Indian Handicrafts, 10-D Ist East Main Road, Shenoy Nagar, Madras to know the facts and circumstances by which they could manage to export the consignment consisting the antiquities by hoodwinking the authorities and smuggling the items. Further
v. To collect information regarding the payments made by the Italian customer for particular consignment and also to visit the concerned bank and obtain the records pertaining to payment.
vi. To collect all other information which may crop up during the investigation like the export licence or permit etc. of the exporter.
4. To make efforts to know whether the antiquities in this case are of stolen items by sending Special Look Out Notices and also to other sources like publishing the photograph of the seize antiquities in major national newspapers.
5. Any other points as suggested by SP.
Submitted for perusal. 1. Ms.Sonia Gandhi may well turn out to be India’s Fujimori, the Peruvian Leader of Japanese descent. It is now known that Fujimori has been secretly maintaining and hiding his Japanese citizenship while claiming to be a natural born Peruvian national. The wrath of the people of Peru came to visit upon Fujimori when his corrupt activities came to be unraveled, so he bolted back to Japan with his loot intact and then revealed that he had been all along a born Japanese citizen, and thus immune from extradition to Peru. Ms. Sonia Gandhi has like Fujimori in Peru a long history of committing fraud on the public. Ms. Sonia Gandhi shares Fujimori’s mendacity as well. For, example, in the Lok Sabha Who’s Who, on page 290-91, Ms.Gandhi has claimed to have been educated in the Cambridge University. This is utterly and completely false. Ms. Gandhi had instead gone to the town of Cambridge to learn English in a unrecognized teaching shop. Such falsehood is thus reflective of the duplicitous mentality of Ms. Sonia Gandhi. Time is now near for her to be exposed as India’s Fujimori.
2. Ms. Sonia Gandhi’s track record, hitherto unscrutinized, reveals an incredible venality and culpability under criminal laws of the country. She is therefore extremely vunerable to any hostile government, and thus would seriously jeopardize the prospects of an opposition coalition that included the Congress Party in an election campaign against the incumbent in office. The track record of Ms.Sonia Gandhi as a habitual law breaker are illustrated below.
A. In 1972, Ms.Sonia Gandhi took employment as an insurance agent of Oriental Fire Insurance, a public sector firm. As a foreigner as she was then, she committed a criminal offence by taking such employment. Furthermore, she showed her business address as the official residence of the then Prime Minister and her mother-in-law, Mrs. Indira Gandhi, at 1, Safdarjung Road, New Delhi, which is an offence. Besides these, she collected commissions on insurance policy sold to Maruti and to individuals in the Prime Minister’s Office, which is also an offence. These facts came to light in a Rajya Sabha Question Hour in November 1974. The then Prime Minister Mrs.Indira Gandhi,and mother-in-law later announced in the House that Mrs.Sonia Gandhi had resigned her insurance agency, a clear admission of culpability under law. The three offences listed above are not subject to the statute of limitation, and thus the failure to prosecute Ms.Sonia Gandhi then, is no bar to launching prosecution now.
B. On January 25, 1973, Ms.Sonia Gandhi was appointed the Managing Director of Maruti Technical Services Private Ltd.[MTSPL] in an “extraordinary” meeting of two share holders who together held all the shares, 20 shares each of Rs.10 per share. The two shareholders at the meeting were Ms.Sonia Gandhi and Mr.Sanjay Gandhi. The MTSPL was incorporated on November 16, 1970. On September 28, 1974, Ms.Sonia Gandhi was made the MD of the Maruti Heavy Vehicles Private Ltd.[MHVPL], which was incorporated on February 22, 1974 with 13 shareholders in which the Gandhi’s had controlling interest. The Maruti car company and the heavy vehicles firm entered into a consultancy contact for expert advice with MTSPL for which susstantial fees were paid.
In 1978, the Commission of Inquiry headed by Supreme Court Judge Mr. A. C. Gupta, appointed by the Janata Party government, submitted its Report on the affairs of the Maruti companies. The Commission recorded the depositions of S.Kumar, Registrar of companies, and A. Banerjee, Income tax officer, Mr. Kumar held that “the allotment of shares of the MTSPL and MHVPL to Ms. Sonia Gandhi was in contravention of Section 28(1) of FERA 1973 which prohibited foreigners from owning shares in Indian companies, and hence was ab initio void in law. By Section 56, Ms.Sonia Gandhi thus committed a criminal offence that limitation on this offence even if FERA stands replaced by FEMA in 2000. Thus Ms.Sonia Gandhi can be prosecuted even today. Furthermore, the Gupta Commission recorded that Income Tax Officer, A. Banerjee had disallowed the remuneration paid by MTSPL to Ms.Sonia Gandhi “because she had no qualifications to be able to render any technical service to the company.” Considering that Ms. Sonia Gandhi holds an unrecognized “diploma” from a English Language teaching shop for unemployed European girls in the city of Cambridge, England, that is quite obvious. Hence a fraud was committed, for which Ms. Gandhi can be prosecuted under Income Tax law as well.
C. The electoral rolls of the New Delhi Constituency were revised in 1980 with January of that year as the qualifying date. When the voter list was published, Ms. Sonia Gandhi, then an Italian citizen, illegally became a voter at serial number 388 of polling station number 145 of that constituency. Ms. Gandhi applied to become an Indian citizen only on April 7, 1983, and was granted citizenship with lightening speed on the same day. But during the three years till the beginning of 1983, Ms. Sonia Gandhi remained on the voter roll committing offences punishable under Section 31 of the Representation of Peoples Act 1950, of a maximum sentence of one year and fine. Ms. Sonia Gandhi cannot say that she was not willfully committing this grievous offence because to become a voter, one has to fill and sign Form 6 prepared under the Electors Rules 1960 in which affirmation of citizenship of India is essential. Hence Ms. Gandhi by this false affirmation also committed offences under the Indian Penal Code, particularly Sections 192 and 199, which carry a three year punishment.
D. During the 1980s, Ms.Sonia Gandhi’s mother Mrs.Paola Maino, and sister Anushka Vinci had developed business connections with Snam Progetti’s resident in India, Mr.Ottavio Quattrocchi. The Influence wielded by Rajiv Gandhi’s Italian in-laws enabled Quattrocchi to corner government contracts such Thal Vaishet fertilizer project, as well as to broker deals such as the Bofors 155mm gun sale to the Indian Army. Affidavits filed in a Malaysian court and documents with the CBI establish that Sonia’s sister Anushka and her husband (now ex) Walter Vinci were beneficiaries from the receipts of Quattrocchi from Bofors company. Quattrocchi has also declared that he is a close friend of Ms.Sonia Gandhi, a claim not denied by her. Hence Ms.Sonia Gandhi, her sister and mother are candidates for inclusion in the Bofors bribery case FIR under Section 319 of the Cr.P.C., to be thus investigated and prosecuted.
E. Revelations contained in the archives of the KGB became public, and some of which were published in Pravda and Izvestia in 1992 following the liquidation of the Soviet Union. Most of these Archives are now kept in a library at Harvard University, USA. One letter in the archives documents the regular payment of commission to Ms.Sonia Gandhi and the Maino family in Italy, arranged by the KGB. One letter [published in a Russian news daily Izvestia on June 27, 1992 in an article by Ms.Yevgenia Albats of Moscow News] was written by the then KGB chief, Viktor Chebrikov to the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union [CPSU]. The KGB chief reporting these payments to the CPSU for ractification, stated that members of the Rajiv Gandhi family had expressed profound gratitude for the help being received by them through commercial deals of an organizations. In a confidential message to the KGB, stated Chebrikov to the CPSU, “they [the Mainos] informed that a major part of these resources was used to support the party of Mr.Rajiv Gandhi”. Only July 3, 1992 Ms.Tatiana Samolis, the spokesperson of the KGB’s successor organization, the Federal Intelligence service [FIS], in a press briefing in Moscow [which was reported in the Hindu 4.7.92] confirmed that indeed such a connection between the KGB and Mainos had existed “in view of the ideological confrontation that prevailed in the world at that time” In the 1989 elections for example the Mainos spent Rs.10 crores on select candidates of the Congress Party in the General Elections, obviously to create cheerleaders for Ms.Sonia Gandhi for a future contingency, Mr.Arjun Singh was one such recipient from the Mainos. Ms.Sonia Gandhi, her mother and sister are thus guilty of offences under IPC Sections 120B read with 171-C and 171-H, as well as FERA and FCRA.
F. The Mainos have systematically plundered and exported the ancient treasures of India, especially temple sculptures of Tamil Nadu, Andhra, Orissa and Madhya Pradesh, Mughal paintings and precious gems in Indian Museums, all protected and banned from export under the Antiquities and Art Treasures Act, 1972. The CBI had in 1993 registered cases on such illegal exports from a Chennai Suburb to an identified person in Italy (see enclosed document). Alitalia and Air India flights were used to send unchecked crates after after crates misusing the SPG cover first to Italy for display in shops owned by her family e.g.Etnica in Rivolta or Ganpati in Orbassano [see enclosed photo and calling card], and after creating an ownership on paper, getting the contraband auctioned by Sotheebys and Christies, the London auctioneers. Fred Watson’s Sothebys-An Inside Story [Random House, 1998] gives some clues on such a racket. There is in the records of the Ministry of Human Resources enough materials in Notes on file of Directors Generals of Archeological Survey of India to suggest precious ancient paintings of the Mughal period were removed and declared “stolen” or missing, but ended up in a house in Golf Links, New Delhi which Ms.Sonia Gandhi had frequented. Even the Festival of India was used as a ploy to smuggle out such treasures. In arranging these delicate operations the Mainos took the help Mr.Arjun Singh [when he was Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister and later Union Human Resources Development Minister], art expert Martand Singh, a Pakistani couple Muneer and Farida Attaullah, London based Pakistani fixer Salman Thassir a prince of Kuwait, and even the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) which has been convicted by courts in India for the assassination of Mr.Rajiv Gandhi Thus, Ms.Sonia Gandhi and her Italian relatives are culpable for various offences under the Antiquities and Art Treasures Act as well as under Sections 295, 378 and 410 of the IPC.
G. When Rajiv Gandhi married Sonia Gandhi on February 25, 1968, she was poor. Her Father Stefano Maino had lost everything after his party leader, Benito Mussolini, the II Duce of Fascist Italy, was overthrown and killed. After World War II, Stefano became a brick layer, and Sonia’s mother, Paola Predebon, a share cropper. Like many poor Italian families, Sonia was dispatched to learn English in a teaching shop in Cambridge town and thus land a job as an hostess or in similar employment, a modest goal indeed. Her marriage to Rajiv Gandhi on 25.2.68 however changed all that. And because of the aforesaid illegal activities, the Maino family became in just 25 years the richest family of Italy with net worth of US $ 2.0 billion. The respected Swiss magazine, Schweizer Illusttrierte, in its November 1991 issue, reported that the Mainos had in 1991 about $2.7 billion. But over the 1990s decade, the Mainos appear to have lost some of the money due to reckless investments, collapse of the Barings Bank, and ostentatious spending. They are still worth about US $2.0 billion today.
H. Ms.Sonia Gandhi has also fully utilized the martyrdom of her husband Rajiv Gandhi to advance her political career as well as to take control of the Nehru family’s monetary inheritance. The Rajiv Gandhi Foundation was set up under her chairmanship and Rs.200 crores collected during Narasimha Rao’s tenure as PM, for use in education and public affairs. Yet an analysis of the accounts of the Foundation show that only 3% of the income is being used for the stated objectives while 97% is deployed for other goals including for private travel of Ms.Gandhi and her chosen ones. This is a violation of the Trust Act and thus Ms.Gandhi and other trustees can be proceeded under Section 92 of the CPC. There is already a PIL in the Delhi High Court in this matter.
3. Circumstantial evidence is also fast accumulating that makes it now imperative for the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) to probe whether the mother (Ms.Paola Maino) and sister (Ms.Anushka Vinci) of Ms.Sonia Gandhi, have had a long term continuing association since 1984 with the terrorist organization, the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), The Supreme Court had delivered on May 12, 1999 a stinging judgement that held the LTTE responsible for the assassination of India’s former Prime Minister Mr.Rajiv Gandhi. The Government had set up a Multi Disciplinary Monitoring Agency (MDMA) in August 1998, led by the CBI, to probe leads such as that have now surfaced regarding the Maino-LTTE links.
4. The Circumstantial evidence of these links include Sonia Gandhi’s plea for commuting the death penalty for her husband’s killers; in providing one acre of land near the Indira Gandhi International Airport, Delhi, for housing the Periyar Centre for the pro-LTTE and secessionist Dravida Kazhagam (DK) which had been indicted in Rajiv Gandhi’s assassination by the Jain Commission (Part III, Vol.IV, Chapter VII, Pages 161-73, of the Final Report) and whose seven key members have been sentenced along with nineteen others of the LTTE by the Supreme Court, for participating in the assassination conspiracy. There are several other examples of Ms.Sonia Gandhi going inexplicably soft on the LTTE, including remaining silent on the failure of the government to extradite the LTTE Supremo Prabhakaran.
5. The CBI-led Multi Disciplinary Monitoring Agency (MDMA) set up after the Jain Commission Final Report, should therefore send interrogatories to the Maino family in Italy about all this, and investigate the extent of their connections with LTTE.
6. Ms.Sonia Gandhi’s family in Italy constitutes a major national security risk for India, but paradoxically they enjoy the cover of the Indian state for their nefarious activities. The RAW, India’s foreign intelligence agency has reports of this national security risk. While in service (during Rajiv Gandhi’s tenure as PM), the Additional Director of RAW, B.Raman had in a report stated:
“Ms.Sonia Gandhi’s umbilical cord is strongly tied to Italy. Her close relatives are Italian citizens living in Italy. India has important national security interest in Italy because of its arms, nuclear and technology supply relationships with Pakistan and China.”
Raman concluded that no source in Italy or in EU would cooperate with Indian Intelligence on this issue since they would fear that one day perhaps these sources may fall into Italian hands. After retirement from RAW, Raman even published these views in Statesman (May 16, 1999) in an article under his own name.
Italy, incidentally, is flouting US sanctions and providing avionics to the Sino-Pakistan Joint project to manufacture the F-1 Chinese design plane update, which is to be a successor to the US F-16 super fighter jets. Indian Intelligence is busy trying to build sources in Italy to track details of this collaboration.