A Delhi court Wednesday extended the judicial custody of former finance minister P Chidambaram for two weeks in connection with the INX Media money laundering case lodged by the Enforcement Directorate. Special judge Ajay Kumar Kuhar passed the order after the ED sought 14-day extension of Chidambaram’s judicial custody, saying the investigation in the case was still going on.
“The accused was further interrogated on November 22 and 23 with the permission of the court. The bail application of the accused is listed for hearing before the Supreme Court on November 28,” the ED application said.
The counsel for the 74-year old senior Congress leader did not oppose ED’s plea.
"Heard. Considering the facts and circumstances of the case, the judicial custody remand of accused P Chidambaram is extended till December 11, 2019. Accused be produced on December 11, 2019," the judge said.
Chidambaram was arrested by the CBI in the INX Media corruption case on August 21 and was sent to the judicial custody on September 5.
Later, the ED arrested him on October 16 in the money laundering case related to the scam. He was sent to the judicial custody on October 30 in the money laundering case.
Since his arrest on August 21, the senior Congress leader has spent 98 days in custody, which include his custodial interrogation in both the cases lodged by the CBI and the ED, and the days he spent in Tihar central jail.
Chidambaram was granted bail on October 22 in the corruption case lodged by the CBI. His bail application in the money laundering case is pending before the apex court.
The former finance minister has approached the apex court challenging the Delhi High Court’s November 15 verdict which denied him bail in the INX Media money laundering case filed by the ED.
The CBI registered its case on May 15, 2017, alleging irregularities in a Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB) clearance granted to the INX Media group for receiving overseas funds of Rs 305 crore in 2007, during Chidambaram’s tenure as finance minister.
Thereafter, the ED lodged a money-laundering case.