New Delhi: Soon after the Delhi High Court dismissed both anticipatory bail pleas of former Union Finance Minister P Chidambaram in connection with INX Media case, the Congress leader moved the Supreme Court on Tuesday. Chidambaram’s lawyers had asked for a three-day stay and interim protection from arrest with both the CBI and the Enforcement Directorate (ED) opposing his plea saying the Congress leader was required for custodial interrogation. (Also read: ‘Democracy Suffering Blow,’ Says Chidambaram)
Chidambaram has been asked to mention his appeal on Wednesday at 10.30 AM in the Supreme Court.
Meanwhile, ED officials also turned up at Chidambaram’s residence. A team of Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) officials had also paid him a visit earlier in the evening.
As far as the case is concerned, in 2007, the CBI had registered an FIR alleging irregularities in the Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB) clearance given to INX Media to the tune of Rs 305 crore in 2007 when Chidambaram was the finance minister.
Based on the FIR, the ED had filed a Prevention of Money Laundering Act case against him.
Chidambaram’s son Karti was also been named in the two cases. He was arrested on February 28, 2018, and was later released on bail. The ED had attached properties belonging to him.
On July 4, a Delhi court had allowed Indrani Mukerjea, the former head of the INX Media, to turn an approver in the CBI case.
Meanwhile, the ED has summoned Chidambaram for questioning on August 23, coming Friday, in connection with the money-laundering probe in an alleged aviation scam during the rule of United Progressive Alliance.
The officials said that Chidambaram has been asked to record his statement before the investigating officer of the case at the ED office in New Delhi.
In June, former civil aviation minister and Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) leader Praful Patel was also questioned for nearly eight hours by the ED in connection with the same multi-crore aviation scam.
Last month, the CBI filed a fresh charge-sheet in the Aircel-Maxis case against 18 accused, including Chidambaram, Karti, and select government officials, both serving and retired. The Aircel-Maxis deal case, which emerged out of 2G spectrum cases, pertains to an FIPB clearance granted to firm M/S Global Communication Holding Services Ltd for investment in Aircel.