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'Bizarre and Outlandish,' Says Karti Chidambaram After ED Attaches Assets Worth Rs 54 Crore

The attached Indian assets include properties in Kodaikanal and Ooty in Tamil Nadu and a flat in Delhi's Jorbagh. A cottage and house in Somerset in UK and a tennis club located in Barcelona, Spain have also been attached.


Updated:October 11, 2018, 3:00 PM IST

New Delhi: The Enforcement Directorate on Thursday attached assets worth Rs 54 crore of Karti Chidambaram, son of former Finance Minister P Chidambaram, in India, UK and Spain in connection with the INX Media money laundering case.

The ED issued a provisional order under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA). The attached Indian assets include those in Kodaikanal and Ooty in Tamil Nadu and a flat in Delhi's Jorbagh.

A cottage and house in Somerset in the UK and a tennis club located in Barcelona, Spain have also been attached.

ED sources said fixed deposits worth Rs 90 lakh, kept in a bank in Chennai, in the name of Advantage Strategic Consulting Private Limited (ASCPL) have also been attached.

The assets are in the name of Karti and ASCPL, the firm allegedly linked to him, they said.

What is FIPB?

FIPB was a national agency of the central government with the remit to consider and recommend foreign direct investment (FDI) that does not come under the automatic route.

What is the case?

The CBI has alleged that firms with links to Karti had influenced FIPB approval for Rs 305 crore irregular investment in INX media. This took place in 2007 when his father was the Finance Minister. The FIR has been registered against Karti, INX Media along with eight others and unknown officials of the finance ministry.

The Case Files

The Finance Ministry received an application from INX media for FIPB approval on March 15, 2007. The FIPB, in a meeting on May 18, 2017, recommended the proposal of INX media. However, the board did not approve downstream investment by INX media in INX news. And even for INX media, FIPB allowed FDI inflow of only Rs 4.62 crore.

As per the CBI FIR, contrary to approval of FIPB, INX media deliberately violated conditions and made downstream investment up to 26% in the capital or INX news.

They allegedly generated over Rs 305 crore of FDI in INX media against the allowed foreign inflow of Rs 4.62 crore by issuing shares to foreign investors at a premium of over Rs 800 per share

The CBI has alleged that officers concerned of the FIPB unit by virtue of influence of Karti Chidambaram, not only ignored serious illegalities on part of INX media, on both accounts, but also deliberately showered undue favours. The officers also ignored the request of Revenue Department seeking an investigation into the matter.

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| Edited by: Mayur Borah
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