INX Media Case LIVE Updates: A team of six officials of the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) arrived at the house of former Union minister and senior Congress leader P Chidambaram on Tuesday evening, hours after the Supreme Court turned down his plea for an urgent hearing of his anticipatory bail petition in connection with the corruption and money laundering cases related to the INX Media scandal. The apex court's decision came hours after Chidambaram’s plea was rejected by the Delhi High Court, which opened up the possibility of his arrest.
The plea in Supreme Court was moved after senior advocate Kapil Sibal met Chidambaram and discussed with him the situation after the Delhi HC order. Senior advocates Salman Khurshid and Abhishek Manu Singhvi had also joined the deliberations in SC. The plea will now be taken up by Chief Justice Ranjan Gogoi's bench on Wednesday.
Aug 20, 2019 10:20 pm (IST)
Congress leader Manish Tewari, in a tweet, said, "Unrelenting, insidious and vindictive persecution of P Chidambaram and his family is an insult to the rule of Law as it stands constituted in a Democracy."
Unrelenting,insidious&vindictive persecution of @PChidambaram_IN and his family is an insult to rule of Law as it stands constituted in a Democracy.Those who sow the wind eventually reap the whirlwind. Hubris of ignorance & arrogance is a deadly cocktail. Vendetta never pays...
"P Chidambaram has sought an appeal in Supreme Court tomorrow. His bail was rejected today but what was the urgency for ED and CBI to haunt him tonight," Anand Sharma told CNN News18.
Aug 20, 2019 9:13 pm (IST)
Not a Criminal Case, Says Anand Sharma | On Supreme Court rejecting the urgent hearing of Chidambaram’s anticipatory bail, Congress leader Anand Sharma told CNN News18, “This is not a criminal trial. What is happening today is not good for democracy.”
Aug 20, 2019 8:37 pm (IST)
Justice Sunil Gaur to Retire in 48 Hours | Justice Sunil Gaur who passed the ordered to dismiss the anticipatory bail pleas is set to retire in 48 hours. He was the one who had reserved the decision in the matter on January 25 earlier this year.
Aug 20, 2019 8:29 pm (IST)
A team of Enforcement Directorate (ED) officers arrives at the residence of P Chidambaram. Earlier today, Delhi High Court had dismissed his both anticipatory bail pleas in connection with INX Media case.
Delhi: A team of Enforcement Directorate (ED) officers arrives at the residence of P Chidambaram. Earlier today, Delhi High Court had dismissed his both anticipatory bail pleas in connection with INX Media case. pic.twitter.com/OlOqAaosZo
Image of CBI officials inside the residence of Congress leader P Chidambaram during a raid, in Jorbagh
Aug 20, 2019 8:24 pm (IST)
P Chidambaram's counsel Abhishek Manu Singhvi told CNN News18, “P Chidambaram was with me till 6.30 pm in my chamber.”
Aug 20, 2019 8:20 pm (IST)
According to sources, CBI is non-committal about the arrest of P Chidambaram tonight.
Aug 20, 2019 8:17 pm (IST)
Image of Enforcement Directorate (ED) officials inside the residence of Congress leader P Chidambaram during a raid, in Jorbagh, New Delhi. (PTI photo)
Aug 20, 2019 8:13 pm (IST)
Adjective Like 'Kingpin' is Allegation: Singhvi | “The time of the bail order cancellation is worth seeing. An adjective like ‘kingpin’ is an allegation. The Judge reserved the order for seven months. This is obvious that if Chidambaram didn’t get the anticipatory bail then he can be arrested,” Abhishek Singhvi told CNN News18.
Aug 20, 2019 8:10 pm (IST)
"I left to Supreme Court when I heard the news. We discussed for two hours with P Chidambaram. Chidambaram is not a proclaimed offender or absconder. He always attended the summons by CBI and ED," Abhishek Singhvi told CNN News18.
Aug 20, 2019 8:05 pm (IST)
WATCH | P Chidambaram’s counsel Abhishek Singhvi spoke to CNN News18 and said that there was no arrest warrant against Chidambaram. He also said that Chidambaram was not a proclaimed offender.
Chidambaram Not a Proclaimed Offender: Singhvi | Congress leader Abhishek Singhvi told CNN News18, “There is no arrest warrant against P Chidambaram.” He also added that Chidambaram was not a proclaimed offender. “We will seek relief from Supreme Court tomorrow,” Singhvi added.
Aug 20, 2019 7:54 pm (IST)
Top government sources said, “This is law taking its course. We have nothing to say either on the High Court observations or the CBI at his home.”
Aug 20, 2019 7:49 pm (IST)
The court observed that the economic crimes of such "mammoth scale are craftily planned and executed".
Aug 20, 2019 7:49 pm (IST)
"Taking note of huge magnitude of conspiracy angle qua the petitioner, it would be pre mature to jump to a conclusion that the provision of Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) would not apply to the instant case, as it cannot be said that the amount involved is below Rs 30 lakh. Rather money laundering involved in this INX Media scam is Rs 305 crore and Aircel-Maxis scandal is Rs 3,500 crore," the 24-page judgement read.
Aug 20, 2019 7:48 pm (IST)
The 24-page judgement said the gravity of offence committed in this case amply justifies denial of pre arrest bail and it was of the prima facie opinion that it was not a fit case for granting the relief to him. It said: "Economic offences constitute a class apart and need to be visited with a different approach in the matters of bail.”
Aug 20, 2019 7:47 pm (IST)
"It is preposterous to say that prosecution of the petitioner is baseless, politically motivated and an act of vendetta... The offenders must be exposed, no matter what their status is," Justice Gaur said. This court is of the prima facie opinion that custodial interrogation of the petitioner is required for an effective investigation, he said.
Aug 20, 2019 7:46 pm (IST)
Being MP Wouldn't Justify Grant of Pre-arrest Bail: HC | The high court said: "It cannot be forgotten that the petitioner (Chidambaram) was the Finance Minister at the relevant time and he had given FDI clearances to INX Media Group for receiving overseas funds to the tune of Rs 305 crore." Justice Gaur said: "Simply because he is a Member of Parliament would not justify the grant of pre-arrest bail to him. The magnitude of the offence dissuades this court to grant bail to the petitioner.
Aug 20, 2019 7:44 pm (IST)
The court, which had reserved its order on January 25 on the anticipatory bail pleas of Chidambaram in both CBI and ED cases, also declined interim protection from arrest to him for approaching the Supreme Court in the case. The high court had on July 25, 2018 granted interim protection from arrest to Chidambaram in both the cases and it had been extended from time to time.
Aug 20, 2019 7:44 pm (IST)
CBI had registered an FIR on May 15, 2017 alleging irregularities in the Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB) clearance granted to the INX Media group for receiving overseas funds of Rs 305 crore in 2007 during Chidambaram's tenure as finance minister. Thereafter, the ED in 2018 lodged the money laundering case in this regard.
Aug 20, 2019 7:42 pm (IST)
CBI Has Right to Arrest Chidambaram: Jethmalani | Speaking CNN News18, Mahesh Jethmalani, a lawyer who fought against Chidambaram, said, “ I am sure P Chidambaram is not on run. He is not available. CBI has every right to arrest Chidambaram.”
Aug 20, 2019 7:40 pm (IST)
Enforcement Directorate team reaches P Chidambaram's residence.
Aug 20, 2019 7:31 pm (IST)
Classic Case of Money Laundering: Delhi HC | During the arguments in the court, both the CBI and the Enforcement Directorate had opposed Chidambaram's plea on the ground that his custodial interrogation was required as he was evasive during questioning. Agreeing with the agencies, the judge who is set to retire on August 23 said it was a classic case of money laundering and granting bail in such case will send the wrong message to the society.
Aug 20, 2019 7:29 pm (IST)
The Delhi high court said the "magnitude and enormity" of material produced by the investigating agencies "dis-entitles him from any pre-arrest bail". "This is an economic offence and has to be dealt with iron hands. The hands of investigating agencies cannot be tied up in such a massive economic offence," the court added. The judge also said he petitioner has been "evasive in his replies and has not cooperated with the investigations".
Aug 20, 2019 7:27 pm (IST)
Kapil Sibal spoke to the media and criticised the way the Delhi High Court dismissed Chidambaram's plea in the case. He said there was protection from arrest for 15 months and the judgement was reserved on January 24 and was pronounced by Justice Sunil Gaur two days before his retirement.
Aug 20, 2019 7:23 pm (IST)
Junior lawyers, who were with him, asked the media persons to keep away as Chidambaram eagerly awaited the arrival of senior advocate and party colleague Kapil Sibal. Later, senior advocates Abhishek Manu Singhvi, Salman Khurshid (both party colleagues) and Dayan Krishnan joined Chidambaram and held hectic parleys.
Aug 20, 2019 7:22 pm (IST)
Chidambaram Keeps Away from Media | Congress leader P Chidambaram maintained a stoic silence and kept himself away from the media after the dismissal of his anticipatory bail by the Delhi High Court in the INX Media scam. When the news of this setback reached Chidambaram, he was in the Supreme Court along with some junior lawyers. An attempt was made to seek his reaction but he gestured that he does not want to speak on the issue.
Aug 20, 2019 7:17 pm (IST)
CBI Leaves Chidambaram's Residence | The six-member team of the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) leaves P Chidambaram's residence as he was not at his house.
Aug 20, 2019 7:07 pm (IST)
CBI Arrives at Chidambaram's Residence | A six-member team of Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) officers arrives at the residence of P Chidambaram. Earlier today, Delhi High Court had dismissed his both anticipatory bail pleas in connection with INX Media case.
Delhi: A team of Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) officers arrives at the residence of P Chidambaram. Earlier today, Delhi High Court had dismissed his both anticipatory bail pleas in connection with INX Media case. pic.twitter.com/Zjn4XDiJk7
ED officials at the residence of Congress leader P Chidambaram in Delhi's Jor Bagh area on Tuesday evening. (PTI)
Chidambaram faces imminent arrest as the Delhi HC also turned down his plea seeking a stay on the operation of the order for three days. Denying protection from arrest to Chidambaram, Justice Sunil Gaur said that his status as Member of Parliament and member of legal profession doesn't affect the case.
Chidambaram has been questioned several times in the case in which his son, Karti, has been alleged to have received kickbacks in exchange for him allowing the television company to receive foreign funds to the tune of Rs. 305 crore in 2007.