INX media case: Chidambaram moves Delhi HC seeking bail in ED case

Chidambaram was granted bail in the CBI case by the Supreme Court. (File)

Congress leader P Chidambaram Wednesday moved a bail plea in Delhi High Court in connection with the INX Media. Chidambaram, who is in ED custody till October 24, was granted bail by the Supreme Court in the CBI case on Tuesday.

On October 17, he was arrested by the ED which is probing the money laundering charges separately in the same case. He was remanded in ED custody for a week.

Earlier, the high court had denied Chidambaram bail on the ground that the likelihood of him influencing witnesses cannot be ruled out. Justice Suresh Kumar Kait also observed that the CBI investigation was at an advanced stage.

He is being probed for alleged irregularities in the Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB) clearance given to the INX Media group for receiving overseas funds of Rs 305 crore in 2007. Chidambaram was Union finance minister at the time.

In May 2017, the CBI had registered an FIR in the case. The ED later lodged a money laundering case in the matter.

On Tuesday, the bench of Justices R Banumathi, A S Bopanna and Hrishikesh Roy set aside the Delhi High Court order and rejected the CBI’s argument that giving him relief would pose a flight risk and that he may tamper with evidence.

Directing that Chidambaram be released from jail if he is not wanted in any other case, the bench asked him to execute bail bonds for a sum of Rs 1 lakh with two sureties of like amount. It also asked him to deposit his passport with the special court if it has not been deposited already, and that he should not leave the country without its permission. He should also make himself available for interrogation, the apex court said,