INX case: SC verdict on PC bail plea likely today

The Asian Age.

India, All India

The ED is investigating the money laundering aspect of the INX Media case.

Senior Congress leader and former Union minister P. Chidambaram (Photo: PTI)

New Delhi: The Supreme Court is likely to pronounce on Tuesday its verdict on former finance minister P. Chidambaram’s plea for bail in the INX Media case, investigated by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI). The judgment was reserved on October 18 by a bench comprising Justi-ces R. Banumathi, A.S. Bopanna and Hrishikesh Roy.

The judgment will be pronounced by Justice Banumathi.

The CBI had vehemently opposed the plea for bail, contending that given the position and stature of Mr Chidambaram, his mere presence was enough for influencing witnesses. The CBI had told the court that Mr Chidambaram should not be set free till the examination of crucial witnesses.

The CBI had filed the chargesheet in the case on October 18.

However, even if the top court grants bail to Mr Chidambaram, it would not come into effect as he is in the custody of the Enforcement Directorate for seven days and solicitor-general Tushar Mehta had told the top court on October 18 that they would be seeking the extension of his custody.

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The ED is investigating the money laundering aspect of the INX Media case.

Mr Chidambaram is one of the accused relating to alleged irregularities in the grant of FIPB clearance to INX Media for receiving `305 crore against the approved overseas investment of `4.62 crore.

Besides Mr Chidamba-ram, his son Karti is also an accused in the case.

Both Mr Chidambaram and the CBI had moved the Supreme Court against the Delhi high court order rejecting bail plea by the former finance minister.

The CBI had approached the top court against the high court finding that Mr Chidambaram was not a flight risk and could not tamper with documents which are in CBI custody.

However, the high court ruled against Mr Chidambaram on the issue of influencing the witnesses.

The former finance minister is in Tihar Jail under judicial custody since the rejection of his anticipatory bail by the top court on September 5.

On that very day the Special CBI Court sent Chidambaram to 14 days judicial custody to Tihar Jail and the same has been extended since then.