CHENNAI:IN a late night development on Saturday, the Madras High Court granted advance bail to Karti, son of former Union minister P Chidambaram, who apprehended arrest following issue of an arrest warrant by the Income-Tax department under the Black Money (Undisclosed Foreign Income and Assets) and Imposition of Tax Act, late in the evening the same day.Justice A D Jagadish Chandira granted the relief at his residence after a brief hearing around 11.45 pm on Saturday.
The issue relates to three summons issued by the deputy director of Income-Tax investigation wing under the Black Money Act directing Karti to appear before him in connection with an inquiry into the alleged non-disclosure of overseas assets.As Karti failed to appear, the officer issued a warrant under powers vested under the Black Money Act and directed Nungambakkam police to arrest and produce him before the investigation officer.
Karti, who was preparing to leave for London with his wife and daughter, approached the Chief Justice Indira Banerjee at her official residence on Greenways Road through his senior advocates A R L Sundaresh and Satish Parasaran, around 11 p m.The Chief Justice advised them to move an application seeking advance bail before the portfolio judge. Accordingly, an application was moved before Justice Jagadish Chandira around 11.30 pm.
When the plea was taken up, I-T department counsel A P Srinivas submitted that the petitioner had already secured permission from the Supreme Court to travel abroad through an order dated May 18. “Now, if he gives an undertaking that he would appear before the I-T officer concerned after his return from abroad on a particular date, the department is ready to keep the warrant in abeyance,” he added.
Agreeing to the submission, Karti filed a written undertaking to appear in person before the I-T officer concerned on June 28.Recording the undertaking, the judge granted advance bail to Karti and directed the department to inform the police concerned that the warrant is kept in abeyance. Karti left for UK as originally scheduled in the early hours of Sunday.