Karti Chidambaram, son of former Union finance minister P Chidambaram, moved Madras High Court on Friday, seeking quashing of a Lookout Circular (LOC) issued against him over a corruption case filed by CBI. The LOC has been issued by the Foreigner Regional Registration Officer at the Bureau of Immigration under the Ministry of Home Affairs.
The CBI FIR charged Karti, INX Media, and eight others with alleged irregularities in the Foreign Investment Promotion Board clearance given to the media house in 2007. According to investigators, an FDI proposal of the media house, involving Karti, was “fallacious” but the then finance minister Chidambaram cleared it.
Earlier, CBI summoned Karti through a notice dated June 15. And the LOC was issued on July 18.
However, Karti’s petition claimed that his counsel had informed the authorities about his stay abroad through a letter on June 20. “On July 4, the CBI once again issued a summons against which I have moved the high court and the petition is still pending adjudication. I was always responding to the summons issued by the CBI and there was no absolute cause of action for issuance of the LOC. The circular is a well thought out and meticulously orchestrated fraudulent plan of the CBI to stop me at the airport as and when I proceed abroad by springing an unpleasant surprise on me and leak it to the media that I am detained at the airport and cause embarrassment to me,” his petition said.
Arguing against the LOC, Karti said that such a circular may be used only if the person in question repeatedly and deliberately fails to cooperate with the probe. After additional solicitor general G Rajagopalan sought time to get instructions on the circular, the court adjourned the plea to August 7 for further hearing.