‘₹177 crore deal inked when Sandip Ssingh’s company posted losses’

Congress questions if MoU was quid pro quo for making PM Modi’s biopic

August 30, 2020 11:46 pm | Updated August 31, 2020 09:10 am IST - Mumbai

 Sandip Ssingh

Sandip Ssingh

The Maharashtra Congress on Sunday brought out the financial details of the company owned by producer Sandip Ssingh, who is alleged to be a part of a drug cartel involved in the death of actor Sushant Singh Rajput and accused of having close relations with leaders of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).

The party put out a document which showed that Legend Global Studio suffered losses in 2019 when Mr. Ssingh signed an MoU of ₹177 crore in the Vibrant Gujarat summit organised by the Gujarat government. The party claimed that Mr. Singh’s firm was the only film company that inked such a big deal at the event.

Maharashtra Congress spokesperson Sachin Sawant reiterated his demand for a probe into the BJP’s connection with Mr. Ssingh and the drug cartel. He also sought an investigation to find out who was his handler within the party. “Sandip Ssingh was the blue-eyed boy of the BJP. Financial records of his company reflect a different story,” Mr. Sawant said.

According to documents released by Mr. Sawant, the company suffered losses of ₹66 lakh in 2017, while it earned a profit of ₹61 lakh in 2018. In 2019, the firm again declared losses of ₹4 lakh.

‘Special invitee’

“His was the only company specifically called for the Vibrant Gujarat summit of 2019 by Chief Minister Vijay Rupani. An MoU worth ₹177 crore was signed by the Gujarat government. Was this MoU quid pro quo for agreeing to do [Prime Minister Narendra] Modi ji ’s biopic? Was this a token advance?” Mr. Sawant asked.

Mr. Sawant said looking at the balance sheet of the company, no government would want to get involved in financial dealings with it. “On what actual grounds did the Gujarat CM choose Mr. Ssingh’s company for the deal?” he asked.

BJP counters allegation

Countering the Congress, BJP MLA Atul Bhatkhalkar on Sunday wrote to Union Home Minister Amit Shah, claiming the that CBI probe had exposed links between drugs cartel, Bollywood and ruling parties in Maharashtra. “The State Home Department and a prominent leader of the Maha Vikas Aghadi were working to ensure that this nexus is not exposed. We request that the CBI be asked to probe this nexus,” he said.

Maharashtra Home Minister Anil Deshmukh had earlier said the State would write to the CBI to probe the link between the producer and the BJP.

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