A Special Court on Wednesday granted relief to former Union Minister P Chidambaram and his son Karti Chidambaram by allowing them exemption from personal appearance in the INX Media money laundering case.
Advocate Arshdeep Singh Khurana appearing for P Chidambaram and Karti Chidambaram informed the court that they both were busy in the assembly election campaign in Tamil Nadu and have several political engagements.
Meanwhile, co-accused Peter Mukharjea has moved a bail application in the matter in which the court sought response from Enforcement Directorate (ED) and slated the matter for April 16 for further hearing.
The same court has recently issued summons to P Chidambaram and others in the INX Media case including several firms whose names were there in the chargesheet.
Special Judge MK Nagpal while taking the cognisance on the ED chargesheet said, "I find sufficient material and grounds for proceeding further in the matter against all the ten accused persons named in the complaint, out of which six accused are compes, for the commission of an offence under Section 3 read with Section 70 of the PMLA, which is punishable under Section 4 of the said Act."
Accused P Chidambaram and S Bhaskararaman were arrested during the investigation of the case and they both are presently on bail.
Court also noted that the extensive arguments advanced by Amit Mahajan, the standing counsel of the central government and N K Matta, the special public prosecutor for the ED have also carefully perused the entire record of the case.
The ED in June 2020 had filed a prosecution complaint (chargesheet) in INX Media money laundering case involving former Union Minister Chidambaram and others in Rouse Avenue Court with the allegation of irregularities in foreign exchange clearance given to the firm.
Karti Chidambaram, currently a sitting Member of Parliament, is also an accused in the matter. The chargesheet also names Karti's chartered accountant S Bhaskararaman and others.
Earlier, CBI had registered its case on May 15, 2017, alleging irregularities in a Foreign Investment Promotion Board clearance granted to INX Media group for receiving overseas funds of Rs 305 crores in 2007 during Chidambaram's tenure as finance minister.
The economic offences watchdog had registered a PMLA (Prevention of Money Laundering Act) case based on FIR by the CBI and alleged that irregularities took place in the FIPB clearance to INX Media.
( With inputs from ANI )
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