A CBI court on Monday extended the CBI custody of former Finance Minister and Congress leader P Chidambaram in the INX media case till August 30. The Congress leader had protection from being arrested by the CBI till August 26.
Special Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) Judge Ajay Kumar Kuhar, whose court at the Rouse Avenue court complex here deals with criminal cases pertaining to MPs and MLAs, announced his order after hearing the arguments of the CBI and Chidambaram's counsel.
Appearing for the CBI, Solicitor General Tushar Mehta sought a five-day extension of the remand, claiming further custody of Chidambaram was required to reveal the larger conspiracy in the case.
He said that the CBI has received certain evidence and documents from the Enforcement Directorate (ED), which they now want to confront Chidambaram with.
Appearing for Chidambaram, senior advocate Kapil Sibal opposed the plea for the CBI remand's extension, arguing that no documents have been shown so far to prove the allegations made against the former Union Minister.
On last Thursday, Chidambaram was sent to CBI custody till August 26 after his dramatic arrest the previous night. Both the CBI and the Enforcement Directorate have registered separate cases linked to the INX Media case against Chidambaram who served as Union Home and Finance Minister in the UPA government from 2004 to 2014.
On Day 2 of Chidambaram's interrogation following his arrest on Wednesday night, the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) is enlarging its scope of investigation from INX Media to Aircel-Maxis and four more business deals, suspecting his role in granting alleged illegal FIPB clearances and receiving multi-crore kickbacks through several shell firms, sources told IANS on Friday.
The ED in its money laundering probe against Chidambaram under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) has already expanded its investigation on the same lines.
On ED's lead based on evidence of alleged illegal deposits of over Rs 300 crore made in a single shell firm after purported kickbacks were received by Chidambaram and his son Karti Chidambaram in lieu of granting illegal FIPB and Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) approvals, the CBI has asked the Congress leader to clarify the matter.