Chidambaram flays govt as ED raids his son's firms in Aircel-Maxis case

The Enforcement Directorate (ED ) and the Income Tax department on Tuesday conducted raids at "some places" of Karthi P Chidambaram, Congress leader and son of former finance minister P Chidambaram, in connection with the Aircel-Maxis case, I-T official said.

The raids, conducted by the agencies in connection with its money laundering probe in the Aircel-Maxis case, at two firms linked to Karti - Vasan Eye Care and Advantage Strategic - invited strong criticism by the former finance minister.

Chidambaram accused the government of launching a ''malicious onslaught'' on his family after income tax officials conducted searches at places belonging to business associates of his son.

''If the government wishes to target me, they should do so directly, not harass friends of my son who carry on their own businesses and have nothing to do with politics,'' he said in a statement.

''My family and I are quite prepared to face the malicious onslaught launched by the government,'' Chidambaram added.

ED also summoned two officials of a firm linked to Karthi in connection with the Aircel-Maxis deal, which is part of the overall probe in the 2G scam case.

The Supreme Court is monitoring the probe in this case and for ED it has appointed deputy director Rajeshwar Singh as the investigating officer till the probe gets over.

It may be recalled that in August this year, the ED had issued summons to two directors of a firm said to be owned by Karti Chidambaram.

It has also been alleged that the company controlled by Karti Chidambaram had benefited by earning huge profits during the sale of Aircel, they added.

The I-T department had undertaken the action on charges of suspected tax evasion by these firms, while the ED was a part of the searches in connection with their investigation under the provisions of the Foreign Exchange Management Act (FEMA).