CBI moves SC against HC bail to Karti Chidambaram in INX Media case
26 June 2018
The CBI on Monday moved the Supreme Court challenging a Delhi High Court order granting bail to Karti Chidambaram, son of senior Congress leader P Chidambaram, in the INX Media case.
The CBI has claimed in its appeal that it was "impermissible in law" for the high court to entertain Karti's bail plea when an application seeking a similar relief was pending before the trial court.
"Further, the high court while granting bail (to Karti) failed to exercise its discretion in a judicious manner without ascertaining the nature of accusation, the nature of supporting evidence and the reasonable apprehension of tampering with the evidence in the present case," the CBI said in its appeal.
Karti Chidambaram, 46, who is accused of manipulating government clearance for INX Media, has said the case was result of "political vendetta."
The Delhi High Court granted him bail by in March, after the CBI questioned him in custody for 23 days.
In its appeal to the top court, the CBI said it was "impermissible" for the high court to entertain the bail plea when a similar application was pending before the trial court. The agency also said the court "erroneously" conducted a "detailed examination" of evidence on merits while granting bail — which "seriously prejudiced" its case.
The court, while granting bail, had said bail cannot be refused to an accused unless the crime was of the "highest magnitude" entailing "severe punishment".
Karti Chidambaram has been accused of influencing government machinery to get clearance for foreign investment to the tune of around Rs300 crore for INX Media- a television company then owned by Peter and Indrani Mukerjea - in exchange for bribes.
The husband-and-wife duo, now in jail accused of being involved in the murder of Indrani Mukerjea's daughter Sheena Bora, Peter had made a series of allegations linking him and P Chidambaram to the bribes they claimed to have given.
CBI has accused Karti Chidambaram of using the influence of his father, who was finance minister in the UPA government at the time.
Both Karti Chidambaram and P Chidambaram claim the case was the result of "political vendetta" and that Karti was being targeted since he is the son of a Congress politician.