12 March, New Delhi
The court of CBI Special Judge Sunil Rana on Monday extended by 12 days, till March 24, judicial custody of Karti Chidambaram who was arrested in connection with INX media money laundering case.
Central Bureau of Investigation had arrested Karti, the son of veteran Congressman P Chidambaram, on February 28 at Chennai Airport on his return from London with the allegation that he was not cooperating with the probe agency.
In the month of May, 2017, the CBI had filed a case against Karti for alleged irregularities in Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB) clearance to INX Media, criminal conspiracy and cheating. It 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.
Directorate of Enforcement had registered a money laundering case against Karti and others in May 2017 for his role in facilitating clearance from the FIPB for INX Media Ltd and its Directors Peter and Indrani Mukherjea, both of whom are accused in the murder of Sheena Bora.
Directorate of Enforcement arrested Karti’s chartered accountant S Bhaskararaman in the case under provisions of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA). ED has submitted that during the course of the investigation, it was revealed that Bhaskararaman had been assisting Karti to manage his ”ill-gotten wealth” in India and abroad.
Counsel for CBI submitted before the court that further custody of Kartik was not required but he was evasive and not cooperative during the probe.
CBI contended that new incriminating materials, a CD and documents were recovered in connection with the case during the probe.
Counsel for Karti argued that there is no reason to hold him in custody. He further submitted that Karti is ready to fulfill the conditions of bail if granted by the court. He also sought a separate cell in case Karti was sent to judicial custody.
Counsel for CBI said,”Under the circumstances when there is sufficient material clearly implicating the accused in this serious economic offence, it is absolutely necessary that the accused be remanded to the judicial custody.” Judge Rana after hearing arguments on behalf of CBI and defence counsel passed an order of 12 days judicial custody, till March 24 of Karti Chidambaram and sent him to Tihar.