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ED conducts raids at Chidambaram's premises in Chennai over INX Media Case

Fresh summons were issued to Chidambaram, the son of senior Congress leader P Chidambaram, on Thursday, after he failed to show up for probe in the INX Media case. Photograph:( PTI )

WION Web Team New Delhi, Delhi, India Jan 13, 2018, 05.08 AM (IST)

The Enforcement Directorate (ED) today carried out raids at Karti Chidambaram’s premises in New Delhi and Chennai over his alleged involvement in the INX Media money laundering case.

Fresh summons were issued to Karti Chidambaram, the son of senior Congress leader P Chidambaram, on Thursday after he failed to show up for the probe in the INX Media case. 

Enforcement Directorate officials also raided home of former union minister P Chidambaram's Chennai home on Saturday.

The ED case pertains to the Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB) approval granted in 2006 by then finance minister P Chidambaram.

The central probe agency had registered a case against him and others in connection with the case in May last year. Karti Chidambaram has now been called for the probe by the agency on January 16.

It had registered an Enforcement Case Information Report (ECIR), the ED's equivalent of a police First Information Report (FIR), against the accused named in a CBI complaint, including Karti Chidambaram, INX Media and its owners Peter and Indrani Mukerjea.

The agency has alleged that Karti Chidambaram received money from INX Media for using his influence to manipulate a tax probe against it in a case of violation of Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB) conditions to receive investment from Mauritius. 

The CBI had also carried out searches at the homes and offices of Karti Chidambaram across four cities for allegedly receiving money from the media firm owned by the Mukerjeas and scuttling a tax probe.  

The CBI has said it has also recovered vouchers of Rs 10 lakh which were allegedly paid for the services. 

The agency said FIPB approval in the Aircel-Maxis FDI case was granted in March 2006 by the then finance minister even though he was competent to accord approval on project proposals only up to Rs 600 crore and beyond that it required the approval of the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA).

"In the instant case, the approval for FDI of 800 million USD (over Rs 3,500 crore) was sought. Hence, CCEA was competent to grant approval. However, approval was not obtained from CCEA," it alleged. 

The CBI had filed the FIR against Karti Chidambaram and the Mukerjeas on charges of criminal conspiracy, cheating, receiving illegal gratification, influencing public servants and criminal misconduct. 

The Chidambarams have denied all the charges made against them. 

Former finance minister P Chidambaram, after the CBI searches on May 16, had issued a strong statement in response to the raids, saying the government was using the CBI and other agencies to target his son.

(With PTI inputs)