A CBI court on Monday extended the custody of former finance minister P Chidambaram in the INX media case to August 30 days after the CBI sought five more days to interrogate him.
The investigating agency told Special Judge Ajay Kumar Kuhar that the former minister was not cooperating and the interrogation was incomplete.
Chidambaram’s original four-day CBI custody ended Monday after his arrest on August 21.
Solicitor General Tushar Mehta said there were sufficient grounds for extension of his custodial interrogation.
“He has been confronted with another accused, but the interrogation was not complete.It has to continue to we need another five days,” Mehta said
Hours before the CBI court’s decision , the Supreme Court turned down Chidambaram’s petition challenging the dismissal of his anticipatory bail plea by Delhi High Court in the INX Media case.
The apex court which on Friday had barred the Enforcement Directorate from arresting Chidambaram till Monday, extended the protection till Tuesday in the same case.
A two-judge bench comprising justices R Banumathi and A S Bopanna said since Chidambaram has been arrested and is already in the CBI custody, his appeal in the case has become infructuous.
The bench said however that Chidambaram was free to seek remedy in accordance with the law.
Chidambaram’s lawyers Kapil Sibal and A M Singhvi argued that that the CBI ensured Chidambaram’s plea become infructuous by arresting him when he was seeking protection from arrest.
Chidambaram had moved the apex court immediately after the high court had dismissed his anticipatory bail plea in both the CBI and the ED cases on August 20 and his matter was listed for hearing on August 21 before the SC passed an order pushing the hearing to August 23.
The Delhi high court while cancelling his anticipatory bail plea said prima facie proof showed Chidambaram appeared to be the kingpin and key conspirator in the case. The “magnitude and enormity” of material produced by the investigating agencies “dis-entitles him from any pre-arrest bail”, the court said.
The ED the CBI are probing how his son Karti Chidambaram got clearance from the Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB) in 2007 for the INX media group when his father was the finance minister. Karti Chidambaram was arrested last year by the CBI for allegedly accepting money to facilitate the FIPB clearance to INX Media. He was later granted bail.
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