ED raids Karti Chidambaram's properties in Delhi, Chennai

Karti Chidambaram DH file

The Enforcement Directorate on Saturday conducted raids on senior Congress leader P Chidambaram's son Karti's properties in Delhi and Chennai in connection with the INX Media money laundering case.

In view of the summons served earlier this month, Mr. Karti Chidambaram's legal representative appeared before the ED investigation team on Thursday to give replies to the questions to be posed by the agency. "The ED has no jurisdiction to investigate under Prevention of Money Laundering Act".

ED official charged that Karti had "also closed certain bank accounts and attempted to close other bank accounts in order to frustrate the process of attachment" under the PMLA. And then in 2017, the money laundering case has been lodged by the ED against Karti along with two others.

He also said this was not an enquiry but just a raid, and kept emphasising that nothing was found or seized.

Speaking about the raid at Delhi's Jor Bagh, Chidambaram said the ED officials were "embarrassed and apologetic" to find him there instead of his son Karti.

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The central probe agency on December 1 a year ago had conducted similar searches on the premises of a relative of Karti and others in this case. The agency had raided properties of Karti's close aides in Chennai and Kolkata on December 1.

He also said that there is no FIR concerning a scheduled crime by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) or any Police agency.

The ED case pertains to the Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB) approval granted in 2006 by P Chidambaram, the then finance minister.

Terming the raids as a comedy of errors, he said, "It's a comedy of errors that my Chennai residence and Delhi residence have been raised thrice and the ED has found nothing". Karti Chidambaram is accused of facilitating bribes in the Aircel-Maxis transaction.

Karti is alleged to have received Rs 3.5 crore from Mumbai-based INX media, now 9X Media, for helping it get the FIPB clearance when it was run by the Mukerjeas.

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