NEW DELHI: In a huge setback to former Union Minister P Chidambaram, the Supreme Court (SC) refused to grant him anticipatory bail in the money laundering case being probed by Enforcement Directorate (ED) in INX Media case
After SC dismissed the bail plea in the ED case, Chidamabaram's counsel withdrew his appeal in CBI case from SC in which they have challenged his arrest and subsequent remand to CBI by trial court.
A bench of Justices R Banumathi and A S Bopanna upheld Enforcement Directorate’s argument that his custodial interrogation is necessary to unearth the conspiracy and said that, “This is not a fit case for granting anticipatory bail and giving the relief now will hamper investigations.”
“Economic offences stand at different footing and it has to be dealt with with different approach,” ruled the court while suggesting that Chidambaram can approach trial court for regular bail.
The court also made it clear that Chidambaram won't be shown all the materials collected by ED at this stage and ED too doesn't need to produce the transcripts of Chidambaram's questioning in the court at this stage.
With today’s order, now Chidambaram has to go either to Tihar under judicial custody or will be remanded to ED custody in the Inx media case.
CBI had lodged an FIR on May 15, 2017, alleging irregularities in FIPB clearance granted to INX Media group for receiving overseas funds of Rs 305 crore in 2007 during Chidambaram's tenure as finance minister. Thereafter, ED lodged a money laundering case in 2017.
The Delhi High Court had on August 20, rejected anticipatory bail pleas of Chidambaram in the INX media scam cases lodged by CBI and ED.