Updated: March 25, 2021 3:53:16 am
A Delhi court on Wednesday took cognizance of an Enforcement Directorate chargesheet in the INX Media case filed against Congress leader and former Union Minister P Chidambaram, his son Karti and eight others.
Special Judge NK Nagpal has summoned all the accused, including Peter Mukherjea and six companies, on April 7.
In May 2017, the CBI registered an FIR alleging irregularities in the Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB) clearance granted to the INX Media group for receiving overseas funds worth Rs 305 crore in 2007 when Chidambaram was Finance Minister. The ED later lodged a money laundering case in the matter.
“I find sufficient material and grounds for proceeding further in the matter against all the ten accused persons named in the complaint… for commission of offence under Section 3 read with Section 70 of the PMLA, which is punishable under Section 4 of the said Act,” the court said in an order.
In its prosecution complaint — equivalent to a chargesheet — filed against four people and six entities, the ED has alleged that Chidambaram and his son accepted illegal gratification from INX Media in lieu of granting the company approval for accepting foreign direct investment and further committing a downstream investment into INX News. The prosecution complaint has also included a transaction with Reliance Industries.
The ED told the court in the complaint, “… a total of Rs 65.88 crores has been detected till date, is the amount of properties involved in money laundering as a result of criminal activities relating to the Scheduled offences of the above case registered by CBI and the money was laundered by the accused persons….”
Chidambaram, who has earlier denied the allegations and called the case a political vendetta, on being asked about the latest developments, said, “This is a routine step. Following the CBI, the ED has also filed a case. Summoning the accused is a routine step.”