New Delhi, The Supreme Court on Friday granted interim relief to former Finance Minister P Chidambaram from arrest by Enforcement Directorate in the INX media case till Monday, August 26. The Apex Court will take the CBI as well as the ED case on Monday and also examine the legality of remand of senior Congress leader to the CBI.
However, Chidamabaram will remain in remand till Monday as the SC did not intervened in the CBI matter. “We protect the accused till Monday in the ED case against him,” an Apex Court bench said on Friday. The Bench was headed by Justice R Banumathi and also comprised of Justice A S Bopana.
“We need to interrogate him and he was evasive during the investigation, ” Solicitor General (SG) Tushar Mehta told the Apex Court during hearing. Kapil Sibal, senior lawyer appearing for Chidambaram, said his client was fully cooperating with the probe agency in the case. “Our liberty should not be curtailed and fundamental right should be intact,” Sibal told the SC.
The Apex Court said, as the CBI has also registered the case against the accused, so the court will hear both the CBI and ED case on August 26, Monday. On Thursday, the Rouse Avenue Court here had remanded Chidamabaram to the CBI custody till August 26, Monday, after saying that the cases needed to be investigated and the accused remand for a custodial interrogation was required.
The senior Congress leader was arrested on Wednesday night by the CBI. The CBI had registered an FIR in 2017, for alleged irregularities in the Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB) clearance granted to the INX Media group for receiving overseas funds of Rs 305 crore in 2007 during Chidambaram’s tenure as the Finance Minister in the UPA government. The ED lodged a money laundering case in this regard in 2018.