Former finance minister P Chidambaram’s son Karti Chidambaram was arrested by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) on Wednesday morning in connection with a money laundering case. According to reports, the CBI arrested Karti as soon as he walked out of British Airways flight at the Chennai airport.
The Supreme Court had earlier last week refused to stay a summon order issued by the Enforcement Directorate against Karti Chidambaram in the INX Media money laundering case, after the CBI said he was “not a common criminal” but his plea for quashing the notice was a guise for an anticipatory bail plea.
On Monday, Delhi’s Patiala House court had sent S Bhaskaran, Karti Chidambaram’s chartered accountant (CA), to 14-day judicial custody in connection with the INX Media money laundering case.
Karti is accused of having illegally taken service charges for getting the Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB) clearance to the INX Media for receiving funds from abroad worth Rs 305 crore in 2007, when his father, P Chidambaram, was the finance minister in the Congress-led UPA Government.
The ED had registered a case against him and others in May last year. It had registered an Enforcement Case Information Report (ECIR), the ED’s equivalent of a police FIR, against the accused named in a CBI complaint, including Karti Chidambaram, INX Media and its directors — Peter and Indrani Mukerjea.
A lookout notice issued by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) on July 18 prevented Karti from travelling abroad without the investigating agency’s permission. Chidambaram, who is an accused in this alleged money laundering case, had also appealed to the apex court seeking its approval to allow him to travel abroad earlier.
The CBI had also carried out searches at the houses and offices of Karti Chidambaram across four cities for allegedly receiving money from the media firm owned by the Mukerjeas to scuttle a tax probe.
The Chidambarams, however, have denied all the charges made against them.