New Delhi: In a major development to the INX media case, former finance minister and Congress leader P Chidambaram was on Tuesday granted bail by the Supreme Court in a case registered by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI).
Further, the top court asserted that P Chidambaram can be released provided he is not arrested in any other case, and on the personal bond of Rs l lakh. “He has to make himself available for interrogation,” the court added.
Notably, Chidambaram is currently in the custody of Enforcement Directorate (ED) till October 24 in the same case.
The bench, headed by Justice R Banumathi, made it clear that Chidambaram will not leave the country without prior permission of the court and make himself available for interrogation as and when called by the probe agency.
The bench further clarified that its observation in the order granting bail to Chidambaram in the INX media corruption case would not have any bearing on other pending cases against him.
This comes after the Congress leader moved the top court, filing a Special Leave Petition (SLP) days after the High Court dismissed his bail plea contending that he might influence the witnesses in the case.
The matter in the INX Media pertains to an FIR registered by the probe agency for alleged irregularities in the Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB) clearance given to INX Media to the tune of Rs 305 crore in 2007 by Chidambaram when he was the Finance Minister.
On October 19, the CBI had filed a fresh chargesheet in a special court, stating that jailed media boss Indrani Mukerjea had paid a bribe of US $5 million to P Chidambaram and his son Karti through offshore payments in Singapore, Mauritius, Bermuda, the UK and Switzerland. The CBI was then waiting for a response to its Letters Rogatory (formal request to a foreign court for judicial assistance) sent to the aforementioned countries.