The Delhi High Court on Thursday asked the Central Bureau of Investigation to respond to a plea by former Finance Minister P Chidambaram, seeking bail in the INX Media case, PTI reported. The High Court had on Wednesday listed the plea for hearing on Thursday.
The Congress leader, who is in Tihar Jail at present, had also challenged a trial court order sending him to judicial custody for 14 days in the case being investigated by the CBI. The court will next hear the matter on September 23.
On September 5, a CBI court had sent Chidambaram to jail till September 19 in connection with the case. The court directed that Chidambaram be kept in a separate cell as he has Z-security. It also allowed him to carry his medicines to jail.
According to the CBI, there were irregularities in the foreign direct investment clearance granted to INX Media by the Foreign Investment Promotion Board in 2007. The Congress leader was the Union finance minister at the time. The company was then owned by businesspersons Indrani and Peter Mukerjea, who are lodged in jail in connection with the murder of Indrani Mukerjea’s daughter Sheena Bora.
The CBI claimed that Chidambaram’s son, Karti Chidambaram, allegedly received Rs 10 lakh from the company for helping it avoid punitive action for taking Rs 305 crore in foreign funding in 2007, despite having clearance for only Rs 4 crore.
The Enforcement Directorate had filed a money laundering case in May 2017 against Karti Chidambaram, INX Media and the Mukerjeas. The former owners of INX Media reportedly told the investigating agencies that Chidambaram had asked them to meet his son and help him with his business.