P Chidambaram also expected to be summoned
After more than eight hours of interrogation on Wednesday, the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) asked former Finance Minister P Chidambaram’s son Karti to appear again on August 28. According to sources, Karti was cornered with bank transaction papers of kickbacks received by his companies from INX Media for illegal FIPB clearance given by his father Chidambaram in 2007. Over 100 questions on various aspects of the case were drafted by the investigators which were put to the 45-year-old Karti, the sources said.
According to CBI officers, Karti did not co-operate with them and did not give clear answers to the questions of fund flow to his firms like Chess Management Services and Advantage Strategic Consulting.
After questioning Karti and Directors in his companies, the CBI is expected to summon Chidambaram and senior officials involved in the dubious FIPB clearance.
Karti, who arrived at the agency headquarters on the directives of the Supreme Court around 10.20 AM, was allowed to leave the office after 7 PM. He came with an advocate from Chennai. In the coming days, Karti is expected to be confronted with INX Media owners Peter Mukherjea and Indrani, presently lodged in Mumbai jail in connection with a murder case.
According to CBI officers, Karti did not co-operate with them and did not give clear answers to the questions of fund flow to his firms like Chess Management Services and Advantage Strategic Consulting. Other Directors in his firm will also be questioned. CBN Reddy, Ravi Viswanathan, Mohanan Rajesh and Bhaskararaman are the other Directors in Karti linked firms. In coming days officials of Enforcement Directorate will also be expected to join the probe.
The CBI had issued a notice to Karti to appear for questioning in June but he had sought more time. Later, a Look Out Circular was also issued against him to prevent him from leaving the country. Karti had then approached the Madras High Court which stayed the circular. The Supreme Court later put on hold the high court order. During a hearing before the apex court, Karti had told the court he was willing to appear before the CBI. The court then directed him to appear on August 23.
CBI’s FIR accused Karti of accepting around Rs.5 crores as a kickback from the illegal FIPB approval granted to INX Media by father Chidambaram in 2007. INX Media earlier got only approval for Rs.5 crores to accept foreign investment. Income Tax found that they have illegally received Rs.305 crores and issued a notice. After getting the notice from Income Tax, the INX media owners met Karti and got a dubious post facto clearance from father Chidambaram headed FIPB to save from the Income Tax.