INX Media Case: Chidambaram in CBI custody | What we know so far
New Delhi | Jagran News Desk: Congress leader P Chidambaram was on Wednesday night arrested by the CBI amid high drama at his posh Jor Bagh residence where some officers scaled walls to gain entry, hours after the former union finance minister failed to get any immediate reprieve in the INX media case from the Supreme Court.
After the Delhi High Court on Tuesday rejected his anticipatory bail plea, Chidambaram failed to get any immediate relief from a Supreme Court bench which said his petition will be put before the Chief Justice of India for considering urgent listing.
Here is what happened in the crackdown by investigating agencies against Chidambaram since Tuesday:
- A Delhi High Court Thursday allowed four-day CBI custody of Congress leader P Chidambaram in the INX Media corruption case.
- A Delhi Court Thursday reserved its order on the CBI plea seeking 5-day custodial interrogation of Congress leader P Chidambaram. Special Judge Ajay Kumar Kuhar heard the arguments of CBI and Chidambaram's counsel for over one-and-a half-hour.
- Shortly after Chidambaram, 73, made a dramatic appearance at the AICC headquarters and addressed a news conference to profess his innocence, the Congress leader was picked up by CBI sleuths an hour after he reached his residence and taken to the nearby headquarters of the probe agency for questioning. He will be produced before a court on Thursday where the CBI will seek his remand.
- Chidambaram, who is facing threat of arrest, failed on Wednesday to get protection from the Supreme Court which decided to hear on Friday his petition seeking stay on the Delhi High Court order that had dismissed his anticipatory bail plea.
- The Supreme Court said that it could not pass the order straight away as the as this is a case of "monumental money laundering" and the file to Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi to take a final call. The apex court also found Chidambaram’s plea for interim relief to be defective and asked his legal team to re-file an error free petition before the CJI.
- Meanwhile, the Enforcement Directorate issued lookout notice against Chidambaram, after the agency failed to trace him after visiting his residence three times since Tuesday evening. A lookout notice means that Chidambaram cannot leave the country. All aiports, immigration desks have been put on high alert.
- The Delhi High Court had on Tuesday refused to grant any protection to Chidambaram from arrest by the CBI and the Enforcement Directorate. Holding that the INX media scam was a "classic case of money laundering", the court said the twin facts which have weighed to deny pre-arrest bail to Chidambaram are "gravity" of the offence and "evasive" replies given by him to questions put to him while he was under protective cover extended to him by the court.
- Ever since the Delhi High Court passed the order on Tuesday, the CBI has visited Chidambaram's home in South Delhi's Jor Baghh three times. On Tuesday, the CBI issued a notice to him asking him to appear before the investigation officer "within two hours", after failing to find him at his residence.
- The CBI had registered an FIR on May 15, 2017, alleging irregularities in the Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB) clearance granted to the media group for receiving overseas funds of Rs 305 crore in 2007 during Chidambaram's tenure as the finance minister. Thereafter, the ED lodged a money laundering case in this regard in 2018.
- Congress leader Rahul Gandhi on Wednesday hit out at the Narendra Modi government over the crackdown of the CBI and ED on Chidambaram in the INX Media case, saying that the probe agencies were being misused by the Centre to “character assassinate” the senior Congress leader.
AICC general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra slammed the government over the action of probe agencies against former finance minister P Chidambaram, alleging that he is being "hunted down" as he speaks the truth which is "inconvenient to cowards". Priyanka Gandhi also said that the party stands by Chidambaram.
Posted By: Abhinav Gupta