Published: Mon, March 12, 2018
Medicine | By Earnest Bishop

INX Media case: ED can't arrest Karti till March 20

INX Media case: ED can't arrest Karti till March 20

The Patiala High Court on Monday sent Karti Chidambaram to judicial custody till March 24 in connection with the INX Media case, where he is accused of money laundering. It further submitted that INX Media received overseas funds to the tune of Rs 305 crore in 2007 when Karti's father P Chidambaram was the Finance Minister.

Karti was produced in the court of special judge Sunil Rana, before whom CBI counsel VK Sharma moved an application for judicial custody. P Chidambaram was also present in the courtroom.

Soon after the CBI court's order allowing the plea to send him to judicial custody as it did not want custodial interrogation any more, Karti moved the Delhi High Court seeking bail, which said the matter will be heard on Tuesday.

CBI then argued in opposition to the plea for separate cell on the ground of "threats", and said if at all they were threats, they would be for P Chidambaram and not for Karti.

Special CBI judge Sunil Rana said the social status of the accused can not be the basis for a separate prison.

However, the court directed the lock-up in-charge and jail superintendent of Tihar Jail to provide and ensure proper safety and security to accused during the judicial custody as per rules. "They roam around freely", the CBI lawyer said, adding that there were enough security guards in jail so the "apprehension" was not justified.

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The court allowed Karti to carry spectacles and medicines as per prescription subject to examination and approval by the jail doctor, but denied his request to carry toiletries, books, clothes and home food.

Earlier on March 10, the Delhi High Court restrained the Enforcement Directorate (ED) from arresting Karti Chidambaram till March 20.

Senior advocate Dayan Krishnan, appearing for Karti, pressed for hearing on he bail application today itself in case the court was considering sending him to judicial custody.

Karti was arrested on his return from the United Kingdom in connection with the FIR lodged on May 15 previous year. He was first sent to the CBI custody, where he was being interrogated till now.

In the month of May, 2017, the CBI had filed a case against Karti for alleged irregularities in Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB) clearance to INX Media, criminal conspiracy and cheating. At that time, the company was owned by Peter and Indrani Mukerjea, a couple now in jail in a murder case; it was testimony by Indrani that led the CBI to arrest Karti. The amount of bribe has been reported Rs. 4.50 crore.

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