The Enforcement Directorate will seek custodial interrogation of former Finance Minister if no relief is granted to P Chidambaram from Supreme Court, sources said. Continuing from Friday's argument, the ED will inform the top court about foreign accounts and assets of P Chidambaram, how as finance minister he misused his official position, the sources said. It will also inform details of shell companies and family trust set up by the Chidambarams to route money, the sources added. As per sources, the ED will be showing the court about the progress made in the probe after Karti Chidambaram was arrested.
The statements of FIPB officials who claimed that Chidambaram, as Finance Minister, pressurised them to ignore INX Media bringing Rs 305 crore of FDI instead of Rs 4.6 crore will be provided to the court, said sources. As per sources the details of Letter of Rogatories (LRs) sent to UK, Switzerland, Bermuda, Singapore and Mauritius will be given to the court. As well as the details of Unison Global Investment Company set up in British Virgin Island which was used to receive kickbacks will be shown to the court, the sources said. The court will be told in many other cases of FIPB clearance, same modus operandi was used, the sources added
In case CBI doesn't ask for an extension of custodial remand, the ED will move an application for custodial interrogation and place Chidambaram under arrest in PMLA case involving INX media, sources said. Sources also said that post SC hearing, CBI's investigating officers along with law officers will take a call whether to seek further custody of former finance minister. All depends on the hearing at Supreme Court, the sources said. As per sources, CBI is hoping a positive, favourable hearing from the Apex Court because documents submitted by the agency has stood the scrutiny of both Delhi High Court and special CBI court.
The Supreme Court is scheduled to hear on Monday senior Congress leader P Chidambaram's pleas challenging the Delhi High Court's order which denied him anticipatory bail in the INX Media money-laundering and corruption cases. A bench headed by Justice R Banumathi is also scheduled to hear a fresh plea of Chidambaram in which he has challenged the arrest warrant issued against him and the trial court's order remanding him to CBI custody till Monday in the INX Media corruption case. On Friday, the apex court had granted protection from arrest till Monday to Chidambaram in the money-laundering case lodged by the Enforcement Directorate.The court has sought replies from ED on Chidambaram's plea and directed that all the three matters should be listed on Monday.
Chidambaram has contended that it is violation of his fundamental right under Article 21 of the Constitution, that his petition challenging the high court order was not heard by the apex court on July 20 and 21 and he was arrested on the August 21 night. Solicitor General Tushar Mehta, appearing for ED, had said that lot of "hue and cry" and "political vendetta" is alleged by the petitioner (Chidambaram) and his party colleagues. Mehta said, "I am saying with a great sense of responsibility that this is a case of money laundering of a monumental magnitude". "CBI has recorded statement of Indrani Mukherjea, which will be tested in the trial, that she and her husband Peter had gone to Chidambaram for FIPB approval and he (Chidambaram) had asked them to take care of his son," Mehta had argued.
The CBI had registered an FIR on May 15, 2017, alleging irregularities in the Foreign Investment Promotion Board clearances granted to the INX Media group for receiving overseas funds of Rs 305 crore in 2007 during Chidambaram's tenure as Finance Minister. Thereafter, the ED lodged a money-laundering case in 2017. Chidambaram was arrested on August 21 night from his Jor Bagh residence by the CBI in the corruption case. He was produced before a trial court on August 22, which remanded him to four-day CBI custody till August 26
(With PTI inputs)