South African businessman Justin van Pletzen spotted a relaxed and friendly Ajay, one of the elusive Gupta brothers, in an office block in Dubai on Wednesday morning. He was spotted at around 08:00 South African time (10:00 in Dubai).
“I’ll go back…” Ajay Gupta tells South African businessman Justin van Pletzen.
Van Pletzen published the encounter on his Facebook page, adding that if it wasn’t for the law enforcement authorities in the emirate he would have “dropped” him. “Please share this widely so that we can get him back to SA so he can face the music,” Van Pletzen wrote.
According to Van Pletzen, Gupta visited the Indian Consulate in the building and then left with a bodyguard. The Guptas are in trouble with Indian tax authorities and were supposed to appear before officials on Monday. He left in a Maybach S600, which costs in the region of $190,000 [R2.25-million].
Ajay Gupta and South African businessman Justin van Pletzen chatting in Dubai on Wednesday morning.
“The laws here unfortunately are very strict about getting into a fight with someone. If I did, I would have been given a 50,000 dirham fine or have gone to jail,” Van Pletzen added. “I’ve been telling everyone back home: the Guptas are here, Duduzane [Zuma] is here…”
The full transcript
VAN PLETZEN: Ajay! How are you doing, sir?
AJAY: I’m fine thanks and you?
VAN PLETZEN: Good!
AJAY: Lovely to see you.
VAN PLETZEN: Are you going back to South Africa? The country’s looking for you.
…with a sore heart… huh?
AJAY: (mumbles) They’re not giving a reply. The day they give a reply, I’ll go there.
VAN PLETZEN: They’re looking for you, sir, they’re looking for you.