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INX Media case HIGHLIGHTS: SC to hear Chidambaram’s CBI plea Monday; says ED can’t arrest till then

P Chidambaram arrested, INX Media Case HIGHLIGHTS: The bench, comprising Justices R Banumathi and A S Bopanna, deferred Chidambaram's plea relating to the CBI's probe in the case to Monday as well.

By: Express Web Desk | New Delhi |
Updated: August 26, 2019 11:03:26 am
INX Media case: CBI gets Chidambaram custody for four days, plea in SC today P Chidambaram outside the Rouse Avenue court in New Delhi on Thursday. (Express Photo by Tashi Tobgyal)

The Supreme Court Friday granting former Union minister P Chidambaram interim protection from arrest till Monday, August 26 in connection with the Enforcement Directorate’s probe in the INX Media case. The bench, comprising Justices R Banumathi and A S Bopanna, deferred his plea relating to the CBI’s probe in the case to Monday as well.

Chidambaram is being probed in two cases of alleged corruption and money laundering linked to INX Media by the CBI and ED. Chidambaram’s Counsel Kapil Sibal claiming that Prosecution had handed over a note to the High Court judge after the hearing was over, said some parts of the High Court judgment were “cut and paste” from the note. Solicitor General Tushar Mehta on behalf of the prosecuting agencies argued, “The High Court order had come after it saw the case diaries, ” adding that Peter and Indrani Mukherjea had met Chidambaram on the money laundering charges, in which the former Union Minister had assured FIPB clearance to them, asking them to take care of his son’s (Karti Chidambaram) interests.

Chidambaram was remanded to CBI custody for four days till August 26 on Thursday, a day after the agency arrested him at his Jor Bagh residence. Pronouncing its order, a special CBI court observed that allegations against him “serious in nature” for which a “detailed and in-depth investigation is required.”

Live Blog

Follow HIGHLIGHTS on the Supreme Court hearing on P Chidambaram petitions. Read in Tamil, Bangla

19:23 (IST)23 Aug 2019
Chidambaram's arrest raised questions: D Raja

CPI general secretary D Raja criticised the manner in which Chidambaram was arrested by the CBI, however, he was quick to add that the law will take its course. "The way Chidambaram was been hunted down, detained and arrested has come under severe criticism," PTI quoted Raja as saying in Patna. "The law will take its course. Let us wait and see how the judicial process is going to be."

15:53 (IST)23 Aug 2019
Chidambaram's arrest had sobering effect: BJP's IT chief

BJP IT cell chief Amit Malviya claimed that the law catching up with Chidambaram has made other Congress leaders to start "singing praises" of the prime minister. "Law catching up with Sonia Gandhi's courtier seems to have had a sobering effect on other Congress leaders, including Chidambaram's lawyer, who like a canary, are suddenly singing praises of Prime Minister Modi," PTI quoted him as saying.

14:56 (IST)23 Aug 2019
Delhi HC grants Chidambaram protection till September 3 in Aircel-Maxis case

Meanwhile, in other news, a Delhi Court refused to adjourn the Aircel-Maxis case till Tuesday based on the pleas by CBI, ED which sought adjournment saying the INX Media case was pending before the Supreme Court. The court extending protection from arrest to Chidambaram in the case till September 3, reserved its order for the same date and gave liberty to the agencies to argue anytime before that.

12:59 (IST)23 Aug 2019
Chidambaram granted interim protection in ED case, next hearing on Monday

Granting interim protection to Chidambaram in the Enforcement Directorate case till the Supreme Court takes up the matter for next hearing on August 26, which is the same day when the CBI case will be taken up. Currently, the former Union Minister is in CBI custody until Monday. 

12:56 (IST)23 Aug 2019
Chidambaram evasive, unless interrogated in custody, not possible to unearth huge conspiracy: Tushar Mehta

Referring to shell companies created to launder money and 10 properties abroad and 17 bank accounts created in connection of the case, Mehta opposing the bail plea argues, "Chidambaram was evasive and unless interrogated in custody, it will not be possible to unearth this huge conspiracy.”

12:48 (IST)23 Aug 2019
Chidambaram assured FIPB clearance to Peter, Indrani Mukherjea on money laundering charges: Solicitor Tushar Mehta

Meanwhile, Chidambaram's Counsel Abhishek Singhvi said the High Court judge had referred to an “unconnected case” — Aircel Maxis— to deny bail to him, and added: This shows “how the mind is working to deny me relief”. Solicitor Mehta on behalf of the prosecuting agencies argues that the High Court order had come after it saw the case diaries and says, that Peter Mukherjea and Indrani had met Chidambaram on the money laundering charges, in which the former Union Minister had assured FIPB clearance to them, asking them to take care of his son's (Karti Chidambaram) interests. 

12:38 (IST)23 Aug 2019
High Court judgment 'cut and paste' from note handed over by Prosecution to the the judge: Kapil Sibal

Hearing the ED case, Sibal claims Prosecution handed over a note to the High Court judge after the hearing was over. Objecting to Sibal's statement, Solicitor Mehta says, "Don't make false statements." In rebuttal, Sibal says he is not lying and adds that some parts of the High Court judgment are "cut and paste" from the note.

12:31 (IST)23 Aug 2019
Supreme Court defers Chidambaram's plea in CBI case to August 26, starts hearing matter on ED

While the Court has directed the appeal filed by Chidambaram in the CBI case to be heard on August 26, Mehta requests the Enforcement Directorate case to also be heard on the same day. However, Court denies and takes up the plea for hearing now.  A special CBI court yesterday remanded P Chidambaram to CBI custody till August 26. 

12:22 (IST)23 Aug 2019
Supreme Court takes up Chidambaram's bail plea

The hearing on P Chidambaram's plea has begun in the Supreme Court and it says as there are two SLP’s, it will hear one in CBI matter first. Solicitor General Tushar Mehta appearing for the prosecuting agencies tells the Bench headed by Justice R Banumathi that the petition seeks pre-arrest bail and doesn’t survive in view of earlier decisions. After Chidambaram's advocate Kapil Sibal opposes Mehta's stance, Court says it will hear CBI matter on August 26.

12:06 (IST)23 Aug 2019
Explained: INX Media case against P Chidambaram, and a timeline of events

CBI had registered an FIR in May 2017, alleging irregularities in the Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB) clearance given to the INX group for receiving overseas funds of Rs 305 crore in 2007. Chidambaram was Union Finance Minister at the time.  Last year, the Enforcement Directorate (ED) registered a case of money laundering, and the CBI called Chidambaram for questioning. Read the full story here

11:18 (IST)23 Aug 2019
Chidambaram's hearing today is for protection from arrest by the ED

Today, the Supreme Court will take up Chidambaram's petition for protection from arrest by the Enforcement Directorate. Since he is already in CBI custody, for a reprieve, he needs to file a fresh petition for regular bail. He has been accused of facilitating, as the country's Finance Minister, a huge infusion of foreign funds into a television company, INX Media, in 2007 at the instance of his son Karti Chidambaram, who allegedly received bribe for his role. 

10:51 (IST)23 Aug 2019
Karti Chidambaram praises Kapil Sibal and Abhishek Singhvi for their defense in Chidambaram's INX Media case

Meanwhile, yesterday Chidambaram's son and a co-accused in INX Media case, Karti Chidambaram tweeted that the court proceedings of the case should be video recorded for students of law to learn from senior lawyers Kapil Sibal and Abhishek Singhvi.

10:25 (IST)23 Aug 2019
Economy in ICU, govt issues 'look out notice' for those defending civil liberties: Kapil Sibal

Senior Congress leader on Friday taking a swipe at the government over the deteriorating economic situation said the "economy is in ICU" and the Modi dispensation has issued a “lookout notice" for all those defending civil liberties. His jibe of government issuing look out notice was an obvious reference to probe agencies issuing such a notice for party colleague P Chidambaram and arresting him. 

10:01 (IST)23 Aug 2019
Manner of Chidambaram arrest depressing, objectionable: Opposition

The Opposition on Thursday came out in support of former Union minister P Chidambaram, who was arrested by the CBI on Wednesday, saying that the manner in which he was arrested was “depressing” and “objectionable”. The Congress hit out at the BJP-led government, accusing it of using the CBI and the Enforcement Directorate as “revenge-seeking departments”. Read the full story here

09:51 (IST)23 Aug 2019
SC to hear Chidambaram's plea for bail today

A day after Chidambaram has been remanded in CBI custody till August 26,  the Supreme Court will hear Chidambaram's plea today for anticipatory bail. Chidambaram, who was arrested by the CBI had failed to get respite from the Supreme Court on Wednesday despite the urgency cited by his lawyers to take up his petition for pre-arrest bail.  CJI Ranjan Gogoi had listed the matter for hearing today. Stay tuned to the LIVE blog for the latest updates.

The Registrar (Judicial) of the apex court had informed Chidambaram’s lawyers that Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi had listed the matter for hearing on Friday.

In his plea, Chidambaram said the High Court had “erroneously dismissed” his bail application and that “none of the three grounds to deny bail were made out: there is no allegation that the petitioner is likely to flee justice, or that the petitioner is likely to influence the witnesses, or that the petitioner is likely to tamper with the evidence”.

Before his arrest on Wednesday night, Chidambaram held a dramatic press conference, where he appealed to the conscience of the court and said he would wait for the decision of the apex court on Friday.

“Between now and Friday, I shall walk with a clear conscience and my head held high. I shall respect the law even if it is applied with an unequal hand by the investigating agencies. In the name of freedom, I can only hope and pray that the investigating agencies will also respect the law. In the present circumstances, respect for the law can mean only one thing — await the decision of the Honourable Supreme Court on Friday,” he had said.

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