Exclusive: Are Gupta brothers backing Jalans in Jet Airways deal too?
Murari Lal Jalan, who is trying to buy Jet Airways, is backed by the Gupta brothers (Ajay, Atul, Rajesh Gupta) of South Africa who are accused of serious charges of corruption
Reported by: Brajesh Kumar, Amit Prakash
New Delhi: As part of this investigative series, we had earlier revealed how the Gupta brothers of South Africa are secretly preparing to purchase India's Jet Airways with the help of Murari Lal Jalan.
We had also revealed the family and business links between Gupta Brothers and Murari Lal Jalan. These are the same Gupta brothers against whom many cases of corruption, bribery are going on in South Africa, and any business deal with them is banned in the United States.
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What was the reason that the US government has banned any business deal or agreement with Gupta Brothers?
Murari Lal Jalan, who is trying to buy Jet Airways, is backed by the Gupta brothers (Ajay, Atul, Rajesh Gupta) of South Africa who are accused of serious charges of corruption and subsequently had to flee the country. There is a direct connection between the Murali Lal Jalan family and the Gupta Brothers.
An agreement was done on July 13, 2018, which was registered in Delhi. The two parties to this agreement were LCR Investments, a Gupta family company and the Bengal Orion Financial Hub Ltd of the Jalan family. According to this agreement, LCR Investments signed an agreement to sell a 68.50 per cent stake in its partner company, Heritage Aviation, to the Jalan family company Bengal Orion Financial Hub for 6 crore 85 lakh rupees.
Ankit Jalan signed on behalf of the Jalan family on the agreement. Ankit Jalan is the nephew of Murari Lal Jalan. While Shantanu Awasthi signed the agreement on behalf of LCR Investments. Awasthi is the director of the company.
LCR Investments is a Gupta family company. The company is used to execute transactions with other companies.
Who are the shareholders of this company? Who owns the company?
A 65 per cent stake in the company is owned by Anguri Gupta, mother of the Gupta Brothers. 15 per cent stake is owned by Anil Gupta, a close relative of Gupta Brothers, while the remaining 15 per cent is in the name of Suryakant Singhal.
Suryakant Singhal is the son of Ajay Gupta, one of the three brothers. Until the financial year 2017-18, Singhal was named as one of the directors of LCR Investments. His name was later removed from the list of directors, but he continues to be one of the shareholders.
LCR Investments was registered on October 24, 1989, in Delhi. Its registered address is G2 Swastik Bhavan, Ranjit Nagar Commercial Complex, New Delhi.
The second party to the 2018 agreement is the Bengal Orion Financial Hub, a company of the Jalan family. According to documents, Murari Lal Jalan resigned from this company on March 5, 2018.
However, according to documents filed in the Ministry of Company Affairs on November 26, 2018, the largest stake in the company, around 78 per cent, is owned by Murari Lal Jalan. The second major shareholder was by Orion IT Parks Limited and the third major shareholder was by Ankit Jalan. The remaining shares are held by other people.
But in the latest shareholding records, Murari Lal Jalan's name has been removed. Now the biggest shareholding is that of his brother Vishal Jalan, while the other big stakeholder is Ankit Jalan. The third major stake is with Orion IT Parks. It is a company of the Jalan family. The Bengal Orion Financial Hub was registered on January 12, 2011, in Kolkata. Its address is 41A JC Bose Road Suite, 505, Kolkata.
The Gupta family has transferred the ownership of the company Heritage Aviation to the Jalan family. The transfer was made through the Gupta family company LCR Investment to the Jalan family company Bengal Orion Financial Hub. This is revealed by the documents filed by Heritage Aviation in the Ministry of Company Affairs on December 2, 2020.
Out of a total of 1 crore shares, 68 lakh 50 thousand shares were transferred by LCR Investments to Bengal Orion Financial Hub on December 1, 2019.
This means that now the largest owner of Heritage Aviation is Bengal Orion Financial Hub. The rest is owned by the Mathur family. So, Heritage Aviation, controlled by the Gupta family, has now become a company owned by the Jalan family. This establishes a clear connection between the two families.
Documents accessed by Zee show that Heritage Aviation has received the Letter of Award for the selected airline operator for the Dehradun-Pithoragarh-Hindon route under the Regional Connectivity Scheme of the Airport Authority of India. It included routes like Hindon-Pithoragarh-Dehradun, Gauchar-Sahasradhara-Chinyalisaur, Pithoragarh-Pantnagar, Dharchula-Haldwani-Haridwar and Haridwar-Haldwani. According to documents, a company named Heritage Aviation promotes the air travel scheme of Chardham in Uttarakhand. The company claims that it has 5 aircraft.
So this was all about the link between Gupta and Jalan family. The question is whether the LCR Investments did all these transfers due to the increasing restrictions on the Gupta brothers or if there is a direct agreement between the two families.
We sent e-mails to Bengal Orion Financial, LCR Investments and Murari Lal Jalan, seeking their response on this deal. However, we have not received any reply from them so far.
In an earlier response, Murari Lal Jalan had denied business links with the Gupta Brothers. But the documents showing agreements between the two reveal the real story.
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