A Delhi court Thursday discharged cricketer-turned-politician Gautam Gambhir of all charges in a case of alleged criminal breach of trust and cheating flat buyers. After discharging the BJP MP from East Delhi, Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate Dharmender Singh sent the file back to the District Judge to transfer the matter to the court having jurisdiction as the magistrate’s court was constituted exclusively to deal with matters in which MP/MLAs were an accused.
The police had filed a supplementary charge sheet in September last year in the case against Gambhir and several others under various sections, including 406 (criminal breach of trust), 420 (cheating) and 34 (criminal act is done by several persons in furtherance of the common intention), of the IPC.
Over 50 flat buyers have filed the complaint alleging that they booked flats in a real estate project in Ghaziabad’s Indirapuram in 2011 but it did not take off. Gambhir was a director and brand ambassador of the joint project of Rudra Buildwell Realty Pvt Ltd and H R Infracity Pvt Ltd, against which a case was lodged in 2016 for allegedly duping people of crores of rupees on the pretext of booking apartments in the housing project.
In its charge sheet, the police had alleged that “the developers executed Builder Buyer Agreement with the victims in June-July, 2014 even after the expiry of sanctioned building plan on June 6, 2013. Developers have been demanding and collecting money from the victims unauthorizedly even after June 23, 2013."
“Investors have been deliberately kept in the dark about the litigations involving the proposed site of land. Authorities cancelled the sanction/ approval etc. for the project on April 15, 2015 due to default of payments of requisite licence fees etc. and non-compliance of other formalities," the final report had said.
Besides Gambhir and the firm, the charge sheet also included the names of its other promoters — Mukesh Khurana, Gautam Mehra and Babita Khurana — as accused. The complainants have alleged that “the project was extensively promoted and advertised and Gambhir, as the brand ambassador, helped in attracting and inviting buyers to invest in the project".