New Delhi: The Supreme Court has set for Friday the matter of former finance minister and Congress leader P Chidambaram’s petition seeking protection from arrest till it gets listed. This means that the leader has no interim relief from arrest by either the Enforcement Directorate (ED) or the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI).
The day hasn’t panned out favourably for the Congress leader as his petition seeking protection from arrest was first filed under the ‘defective list’. The Supreme Court said the registry had raised certain objections against it.
It said CJI Ranjan Gogoi would take a call on it and Chidambaram’s lawyers re-filed a petition. However, the apex court wouldn’t intervene as this petition wasn’t listed.
Meanwhile, the Enforcement Directorate (ED) has put out a lookout circular for Chidambaram who has not been seen since the Delhi High Court denied him protection from arrest on Tuesday. The CBI has visited his Delhi home twice since. A lookout notice would ensure that Chidambaram will not be allowed to leave the country.
A day ago, a six-member team of CBI and ED officials had visited Chidambaram’s Jor Bagh residence one after the other but did not find him there.
The CBI team later appeared again to put up a notice at the gate, asking Chidambaram to appear before CBI Deputy SP R Parthasarthy, who is probing the case, to record his statement.
Following this, Chidambaram’s lawyers wrote to CBI asking on what grounds and under which law is the former Finance Minister expected to appear within two hours. They were hoping for a positive judgement from the Supreme Court for the Congress leader and had requested the agency to wait till the hearing but the apex court did not take up his Special Leave Petition.
The CBI is investigating Chidambaram in the INX Media case which it had registered on May 15, 2017, alleging irregularities in the FIPB clearance granted to the media group for receiving overseas funds of Rs 305 crore in 2007 during his tenure as finance minister.