DURING Mayawati’s third term as chief minister of Uttar Pradesh (2007-2012), the real estate business of one of her younger brothers, Anand Kumar, expanded like never before, official records show.
An investigation by The Indian Express reveals that Kumar’s companies constitute a key link in an elaborate network (see graphic) of business associations that involve builders in Noida and Greater Noida, national real estate giants Jaypee, Unitech and DLF, and a company linked to the son of Mayawati’s aide and Rajya Sabha member Satish Chandra Misra.
All these companies had, or have, real estate projects in UP.
The firms, contacted by The Indian Express, said that the associations were legitimate (see box), and had nothing to do with the state government. Mayawati herself, in an unusual press conference last week, referred to a questionnaire sent to her by The Indian Express — in connection with this report — and denied any wrongdoing.
Anand Kumar’s flagship, The Hotel Library Club Pvt. Ltd, is the only one among his at least 50 companies — together estimated to be worth over Rs 750 crore in end-March 2012— that existed before 2007. It is headquartered in Mussoorie, and its main business is the Hotel Shilton there. With a share capital of Rs 24 lakh, the holding company had assets worth Rs 287 crore as of end-March 2012 — much of it in cash — up from only Rs 43 crore at the end of March 2008.
In 2007-08, two of Kumar’s business associates and one of their firms were linked to another business group, Carnoustie Management Pvt Ltd, which was registered in Janakpuri, New Delhi, in September 2006.
Between 2010 and 2012, real estate companies DLF and Unitech invested Rs 6 crore and Rs 335 crore respectively in Carnoustie. DLF and Unitech have said that the investments were part of normal business transactions. Both firms, and Jaypee — which is a joint venture partner with Carnoustie — have residential and commercial projects in UP.
Hotel Library Club is also the holding company of three other firms, which had a total bank balance of Rs 320 crore as of end-March 2012. One of the three subsidiaries of Hotel Library Club is Revolutionary Realtors, which earned Rs 60 crore through “speculation business” in 2011-12, and had a bank balance of Rs 54 crore as of end-March 2012.
Tamanna Developers, a subsidiary of Revolutionary Realtors, had a cash surplus of Rs 160 crore as