INX Media case: CBI starts questioning Chidambaram

PTI New Delhi | Updated on August 22, 2019 Published on August 22, 2019

Former finance minister P Chidambaram leaves to the court from from CBI head quarters, in New Delhi. Photo: Kamal Narang   -  BusinessLine

The CBI on Thursday started questioning former Union Finance Minister P Chidambaram in connection with the INX Media case, officials said.

A team of officials, armed with over 100 questions pertaining to process of clearance, alleged meetings with INX media promoter Indrani Mukerjea, companies Chess Management and Advantage Strategic etc, will question him over the course of his custody with the agency, sources said.

The team under Deputy SP R Parthasarthy is leading the probe in the alleged corruption in the clearance of Rs 305 crore foreign investment to INX Media when Chidambaram was the Union Finance Minister, the officials said.

Chidambaram, 73, who spent a quiet night at the agency guest house in suite number 5 on the ground floor of the headquarters, was offered a breakfast in the morning before questioning began at around 10.20 am, they said.

He will be taken to the special CBI court during the day where the agency is likely to seek his 14-day custody, the officials said.

It is normal for the agency to keep high security for arrested accused in the guest house to ensure proper security and monitoring, they said.

The CBI had arrested Chidambaram on Wednesday night after high-drama with the agency officials scaling the walls to gain entry in his posh residence. The action came after the Delhi High Court removed protection from his arrest and rejected his anticipatory bail plea. Unable to get any relief from the Supreme Court, Chidambaram appeared at the Congress office at around 8 pm where he read out a brief press statement.

Chidambaram, who remained elusive of the CBI, reached his residence with his party colleagues and lawyers Kapil Sibal and Abhishek Manu Singhvi where he was taken into custody by the CBI which arrived there within minutes of his arrival. He was brought to the CBI headquarters at around 10 pm on Wednesday night, they said.

After a thorough medical check-up by a doctor from the Ram Manohar Lohia Hospital, he was taken to the room where he spent a quiet night, the officials said. Mostly, they said, he remained silent except answering a few queries as and when questioned by the CBI officers.

Chidambaram has strongly denied the allegations, saying the payments were for consultancy and his son was in no way associated with that company.

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Published on August 22, 2019
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