The Enforcement Directorate is expected to question former media baron Peter Mukerjea on Tuesday in connection with the money laundering case against INX Media. Mukerjea and his wife Indrani, also an accused in the case, are currently in jail for allegedly murdering her daughter Sheena Bora.
On Monday, the agency sought permission from the special Central Bureau of Investigation court, which is hearing the trial in the Sheena Bora case, an official said, according to the Hindustan Times. The Enforcement Directorate is expected to question Peter Mukerjea for two days in the jail.
The Enforcement Directorate has also summoned at least four Foreign Investment Promotion Board officials in connection with its investigation, News18 reported. Once they depose, their statements will be recorded under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act.
The case pertains to alleged irregularities in the clearances that the Foreign Investment Promotion Board granted to INX Media in 2007. The Enforcement Directorate had claimed that the Mukerjeas, who co-owned INX Media at the time, allegedly took £90 million (approximately Rs 773 crore) from the company out of the country through hawala channels. The directorate accused Mukerjea of conspiring with officials in the Finance Ministry in 2007 to secure clearance to access foreign funds. INX Media allegedly received Rs 3,004.4 million as foreign exchange beyond the disclosed amount permitted, it said.
Former Finance Minister P Chidambaram’s son Karti Chidambaram is an accused in the case. The CBI had arrested him on February 28 for allegedly not cooperating in its investigation. The CBI’s case against Karti Chidambaram relates to alleged irregularities in getting approvals from the Foreign Investment Promotion Board for foreign direct investment in INX Media in 2007. The Enforcement Directorate’s investigation pertains to alleged “proceeds of crime” and money laundering.
The CBI has custody of Karti Chidambaram till Tuesday. On Sunday, it took him to the Byculla jail in Mumbai, where he was questioned along with Indrani Mukerjea. On Monday, a Delhi court had extended Mukerjea’s judicial custody in the INX Media case for 14 days for questioning.