Saturday, 18 August, 2018

Karti Chidambaram remanded to 3 more days in CBI custody

INX Media case: SC asks Karti Chidambaram to move Delhi HC for interim relief INX media case: Karti Chidambaram moves Delhi HC for interim relief
Judith Alexander | 10 March, 2018, 01:48

The court allowed the CBI to confront Karti with his CA S Bhaskararaman who was arrested by the Enforcement Directorate on February 16 and has been sent to judicial custody till March 22. The Delhi High Court today said that he can not be arrested till March 20, the next hearing of the case.

The bench also issued notice to ED and Union of India to file their reply before the next date of hearing.

The agency is likely to move another application seeking the court's direction to issue production warrant against Indrani Mukerjea, former media baron who is a witness in the money laundering case and now behind bars in a murder case, and Chidambaram's chartered accountant S Bhaskaraman.

The trial court order came hours after a high court bench of Justices S Muralidhar and I S Mehta granted Karti interim protection from arrest till March 20.

However, a CBI court extended his custody in the INX media case for three days. He shall also be directed not to leave the country and surrender his passport, it said. With today's order, CBI will have Karti's continuous custody since his arrest on February 28.

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Representing ED, ASG Tushar Mehta stated that there is substantial evidence that there was a clear connection between Karti Chidambaram and Advantage Strategic Consulting. This new extension is because the organization has found new material that further incriminates Kart in the case.

Karti had approached the apex court seeking direction to declare that the Enforcement Directorate had no jurisdiction to conduct any investigation unrelated to the allegations in the FIR lodged by CBI on May 15, 2017.

It is further submitted that INX Media received overseas funds to the tune of Rs 305-crore in 2007 when Karti's father P Chidambaram was the Finance Minister. He has repeatedly said he was being framed by the agencies at the instance of the government.

While granting the protection, the Bench said it was yet to decide the constitutional validity of Section 19 of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act which deals with the ED's power to arrest. These accused included Karti Chidambaram, INX Media and its directors, Peter and Indrani Mukerjea. He is accused by the CBI of receiving a bribe from the two owners of the company, Peter and Indrani Mukherjea.

He said a strong case of money laundering was made out against Karti, and voluminous records have been recovered by the ED.

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