Former Union Minister P Chidambaram approached Supreme Court contesting the FIR and denial of bail in relation to INX Media case. On Tuesday, (August 20) Delhi High Court denied relief to Chidambaram by refusing to grant him bail. Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) and Enforcement Directorate (ED) could not arrest him on Monday.
Here are the arguments Chidambaram made in his petition before the Supreme Court
- The FIR (against him) was "politically motivated and an act of vendetta".
- "The Judge's observation that the petitioner is the kingpin i.e. the key conspirator in this case is completely baseless and supported by no material whatsoever."
- Chidambaram said observations of the high court that the magnitude of the case justifies denial of bail is manifestly "illegal and unjust".
- High Court judge ignored the fact that petitioner (Chidambaram) simply approved foreign investment cleared unanimously by Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB). FIPB was chaired by Secretary (Economic Affairs) and consisted of five other Secretaries to the Government of India
- "Both investment proposals were examined and processed in the normal course and placed before the FIPB. It was FIPB which recommended grant of approval and the Petitioner simply approved the recommendation. None of the FIPB members have been attempted to be arrested"
- "There is no possibility of his (Chidambaram's) fleeing from justice. Further, it is the case of the petitioner that despite having cooperated fully with the investigation the object of seeking his arrest is only to humiliate him and injure his reputation.
- "The policy allowed investment up to 74 per cent of the equity. FIPB unit examined the proposal, found it to be in order and submitted the case to the FIPB"
- "The petitioner was not named as an accused or suspect, there is not even any allegation against the Petitioner in the body of the said FIR. The allegation in the FIR was that INX Media had made down-stream investment without obtaining the prior approval of the FIPB"
- "High Court failed to appreciate that while seeking sanction for prosecution, it is necessary to submit a draft charge-sheet to the sanctioning authority. Once the investigation has been completed without arrest of the petitioner, there is no ground for CBI to oppose bail or seek custody"
- Chidambaram said he has always cooperated in the investigation, appeared for questioning on June 6, 2018, and was ready to appear for further questioning.
- "Hence, there was no ground for denying bail at this stage," he said adding that the high court failed to appreciate that there is no prima facie case against him.
- Chidambaram said the High Court has failed to appreciate that there was no allegation that he has tampered with the evidence or the witnesses.
- "The petitioner is law abiding citizen and has reputation to sustain in the society. He is a sitting Member of the Rajya Sabha. The antecedents of the petitioner are impeccable. He has never been an accused of any offence.
- Custodial interrogation is not at all warranted so as to protect petitioner’s fundamental right under Article 14, 19 (1) (d) and 21 of Constitution of India,"
(With inputs from PTI)
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