The CBI on Sunday brought Karti Chidambaram, the son of former Union minister P Chidambaram, to Byculla Jail in South Mumbai to question him there face to face with Indrani Mukerjea, in connection with alleged charges of corruption in an INX Media deal.
Karti, who is under arrest, was flown to Mumbai early on Sunday from Delhi and taken directly to Byculla Jail, escorted by half-a-dozen CBI officials. Sources said that Mukerjea, who is charged in a separate case of murder of her daughter Sheena Bora and lodged in the women’s prison at Byculla, was taken to a separate room, where the two were questioned together for over four hours, from 11 am to 3.20 pm.
Sources said that Karti was confronted with Mukerjea’s confessional statement in the INX Media case. He was arrested following her statement to the CBI, recorded under Section 164 of the CrPC, alleging that as Union Finance Minister, P Chidambaram had asked her and her husband Peter Mukerjea to help his son’s business.
She said a deal of USD 1 million was struck between Karti and the Mukerjeas to secure FIPB approval in favour of INX Media. According to the CBI and ED, the Mukerjeas have also said in their statements that they had met P Chidambaram at his North Block office in connection with the FIPB approval for FDI in INX Media.
Confirming the questioning of Karti at the jail, Additional Director General of Police (Prisons), Maharashtra Police, Bhushan Kumar Upadhyay said, “A court has granted the CBI permission to interrogate Karti with an accused lodged at Byculla Jail and we are following the order.”
After the questioning ended, the CBI team left for Delhi with Karti.
Before boarding the flight to the Capital, Karti repeated to the media present at the airport that he was innocent. Police didn’t allow him to say anything further.