New Delhi: Former finance minister P Chidambaram on Thursday was sent to judicial custody in Tihar jail till September 19 in the INX Media case after a Delhi Court declined to accept his request to free him on bail.
Delhi: P Chidambaram brought to Tihar Jail. The Court has remanded him to judicial custody till September 19 in CBI case in INX media matter pic.twitter.com/hfnoqVYYkK— ANI (@ANI) September 5, 2019
He is to be lodged in jail number 7 in Tihar Jail.
He was brought to the special court hours after he withdrew his petition challenging the non-bailable warrant (NBW) issued against him following which he was sent to the CBI custody.
In a last-ditch effort to convince the judge to keep Chidambaram out of Tihar jail, his legal team had minutes earlier even offered his arrest by the Enforcement Directorate which could take him into custody to question him.
Special Judge Ajay Kumar Kuhar sent Chidambaram to judicial custody till September 19, allowing him to carry his medicines to jail.
Considering that he has Z-level security, the court directed that Chidambaram be kept in a separate cell. Solicitor General Tushar Mehta assured the court there will be adequate security for Chidambaram in jail, reported News18.
Senior lawyer and another senior Congress leader Kapil Sibal, representing Chidambaram, told the court that the CBI did not have any reason to remand him in judicial custody but to humiliate the senior Congress leader who has been the country’s finance and home minister.
Chidambaram was arrested by the CBI on August 21 and has completed 15 days in its custody.
Sibal told Special Judge Ajay Kumar Kuhar that there was no law that said that once an accused’s police custody comes to an end, he would have to be sent to judicial custody as a ‘necessary consequence’.
“There is no scope of tampering with evidence. In fact, I am willing to go to ED custody. I am willing to surrender,” he told the court, reported Hindustan Times.
The CBI, which had made it clear that it had completed questioning the 73-year-old politician in this case, has opposed Chidambaram’s request. It spoke about concerns of tampering of evidence if Chidambaram isn’t sent to judicial custody.
CBI prosecutor Tushar Mehta also cited the apex court’s verdict to refuse anticipatory bail to Chidambaram earlier in the day, mentioning that the two-judge bench had accepted the possibility of tampering. For added effect, Solicitor General Tushar Mehta also reminded the judge that he was dealing with a case where two superior courts had already denied relief to Chidambaram.
P Chidambaram and his son Karti, however, have been granted anticipatory bail in the Aircel-Maxis case investigated by the CBI and ED relating to foreign investment approvals relating to telecom company Aircel.
The INX Media case relates to alleged irregularities in the Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB) clearance given to the media group for receiving foreign investment to the tune of Rs 305 crore in 2007, when Chidambaram was finance minister. The CBI registered a first information report on May 15, 2017, alleging irregularities in the manner the clearance had been awarded....