Former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on Monday raised concerns over the continued detention of senior Congress leader P Chidambaram in connection with the INX Media case. Singh said that no decision in the country was taken by one person and asked how Chidambaram’s act of approving recommendations could be a crime, PTI reported.

Chidambaram is in judicial custody till at least October 3 in connection with money laundering cases related to INX Media. “If the officers are not at fault, it is beyond our comprehension how the minister who simply approved the recommendation can be accused of committing an offence,” Singh said in a statement after meeting the former finance minister, who is lodged in Delhi’s Tihar jail. “If the minister is liable for approving a recommendation, the whole system of government will collapse.”

Congress interim president Sonia Gandhi and Singh met Chidambaram earlier in the day. Following this, the jailed Congress leader’s family tweeted on his behalf: “I am honoured that Smt Sonia Gandhi and Dr Manmohan Singh called on me today. As long as the Congress party is strong and brave, I will also be strong and brave.” His son, Karti Chidambaram, who also visited his father in jail, thanked Gandhi and Singh for their support.

Singh said that a dozen officials, including six secretaries of the government, had reviewed and suggested the proposal to P Chidambaram, who was then the finance minister. The collective decisions taken by the administration were all recorded in files, the former prime minister added. He also expressed confidence in the courts’ decisions and said that he sincerely hoped justice will be delivered in the case.

P Chidambaram was arrested by the Central Bureau of Investigation on August 21 and is being investigated by both the CBI and the ED in the matter. The CBI has alleged there were irregularities in the foreign direct investment clearance granted to INX Media by the Foreign Investment Promotion Board in 2007.

The investigating agency also said that 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. A case was filed by the Enforcement Directorate in 2017 against Karti Chidambaram, INX Media, and businesspersons Indrani and Peter Mukerjea, who then owned the company.

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