Payment was pending for construction of party headquarters.
New Delhi: After 12 years, the Delhi Congress has finally agreed to pay dues to the tune of Rs 55 lakh to contractors who had carried out construction work of the party headquarters at 2 Deen Dayal Uphadyay Marg in the national capital. The contentious matter was recently settled before the Delhi high court. The court had asked the Congress to pay Rs 55 lakh to the contractors within six weeks.
Justice Valmiki J. Mehta made it clear that if the Congress fails to pay the settled amount within six week period, it will have to pay additional 18 per cent interest per annum to the contractors. The judge said if the due amount was not paid within six months, the entire impugned judgement and decree will revive as it is.
The matter was also discussed recently by the Congress leaders at a meeting at the party headquarters where state president Ajay Maken said that he himself would be contributing Rs 5 lakh to settle the matter. Former city minister Narendra Nath also promised to donate Rs 1 lakh. Among others present in the meeting were former chief minister Sheila Dikshit and former city ministers Arvinder Singh Lovely and Haroon Yusuf.
The Congress recently faced an embarrassing situation when a sessions court ordered attachment of the movable properties of the party’s state headquarters in connection with a case in which it had failed to pay dues to the tune of about Rs 95 lakh to a private contractor. In all, the contractors had been demanding about Rs 1.30 crore dues from the party.
A high drama unfolded at the Congress headquarters, where a police team along with a court official arrived to execute the judicial orders. However, to their utter surprise the state headquarters was found locked from inside. As a result, the attachment proceedings could not be carried out.
The matter dated back to the time when late Ram Babu Sharma was the Delhi Congress president. It was during his tenure that the party headquarters was constructed about 14 years ago.
Contractor Vinod Goyal had moved the court alleging that the party owed him about Rs 95 lakh towards the construction of the building. On February 23, the sessions court ordered that the movable properties of the party be attached.
By the time the police reached the Congress headquarters, its main gate was found locked from inside. Some Congress workers, who had come to congratulate Mr Maken for successfully holding demonstrations against price rise of essential commodities in the city, started raising slogans against the contractor alleging he had filed the case to gain “cheap” publicity.