Aircel-Maxis scam: ED interrogates Chidambaram for six hours. Soon to be charge sheeted under PMLA

Chidambaram questioned by the Enforcement Directorate in connection with the Aircel-Maxis scam for 6 hours

Chidambaram questioned by the Enforcement Directorate in connection with the Aircel-Maxis scam for 6 hours
Chidambaram leaving the ED Office. Graphics courtesy ANI.

The Enforcement Directorate on Friday again interrogated former Finance Minister P Chidambaram for six hours in the Aircel-Maxis money laundering case. This is the third time the agency is interrogating Chidambaram for the money trail from Maxis to son Karti’s firms. ED is expected to charge sheet Chidambaram soon under Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA). As per the Supreme Court’s order, all probes in Aircel-Maxis scam by CBI and ED has to be finished by September 12.

According to sources, Chidambaram was evasive to many questions posed by the officers on the violations in the FIPB and CCEA rules regarding the foreign investment. The former Finance Minister also claimed that he was not aware of his son’s business or money flow into his firms from Maxis. To questions, Chidambaram tried to put blame on Finance Ministry officers and claimed that he was only a signatory to files processed by them.

ED has already charge sheeted Karti in June and on July 19, CBI has charge sheeted both father and son in the Aircel-Maxis scam.  Along with father and son, CBI also charge sheeted former Finance Secretaries Ashok Jha and Ashok Chawla and two serving IAS officers Sanjay Krishna and Dipak Kumar Singh for the FIPB violations to facilitate the illegal takeover of Aircel by Malaysian company Maxis. Around two lakh dollars (Rs.1.16 crore) were received by Karti’s firms from Maxis, said CBI and ED in their charge sheets.

In September 2017, the ED attached Karti’s bank deposits worth Rs.1.16 crore. The trial court is scheduled to start the arguments on cognizance of charge sheets in October after CBI sought time to provide sanction to prosecute the civil servants.

Chidambaram’s nephew Palaniappan, family’s Chartered Accountant Bhaskar Raman and Maxis promoters T Ananda Krishnan and Ralph Marshall are also chargesheeted by CBI[1].

CBI charged Karti and his firms for accepting around Rs.1.16 crores from Maxis when the files were pending with father Chidambaram.  First Rs. 26 lakhs were received by Advantage Strategic Consulting Pvt Limited and the balance amount was received through Chess Management Services Pvt Limited.

Aircel-Maxis scam was first exposed by BJP leader Subramanian Swamy in April 2012 by exposing Karti’s hidden firm Advantage Strategic Consulting Pvt. Ltd and its secret subsidiary in Singapore. Swamy at a press conference in April 26, 2012 press conference produced documents of money trail of Rs.26 lakh with Karti’s firm and Aircel Televenture. The Supreme Court’s order to finish the probe within six months was based on the petition filed by Subramanian Swamy.

References:

[1] Finally crooked P Chidambaram caught under Prevention of Corruption Act in Aircel-Maxis ScamJul 19, 2018, PGurus.com

Team PGurus

4 COMMENTS

  1. Every nation need 1.Honest police
    2.Honest judiciary3. Honest press. Honest leaders who are nationalist first.
    Need a set up to watch all and expose faults.

  2. This case is getting vexatious. Third round of interrogation and yet no chargesheet, evasive asnwers, no knowledge of son’s business…. This case is getting no where and with ArunJaitley back….. !!!

  3. The Enforcement Directorate (ED) is the best strong organisation compared to many other investigative agencies. Kudos to ED Chief Karnal Singh and team. They are doing great job. Earlier days ED was acting like a subsidiary unit of Finance Ministry with no spine.

    • I agree with you Vinay. But ED is still not 100% cleansed.

      It took humongous efforts on the part of Dr. Swami & the temporary absence of the ‘Trojan Jaitley’ to partially clean the ED through continuous prodding of Modiji.

      Now with Jaitley back to square one, things may not move as favorably as we imagine

      With the impetus gained by the officers of unimpeachable integrity – due to Dr. Swami’s efforts – We can hope no more stumbling blocks can be created in prosecuting the Aircel Maxis, 2G, Illegal Telephone line Scams.

      But strict vigilance on the activities of the (1) Public Prosecutor Team & (2) certain key Officials in the Finance Ministry who have in their possession essential documents is imperative to successfully obtain convictions.

      We hope Dr. Swami & Team PGurus will do all necessary to ensure the prosecution cases are not derailed.

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