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Tuesday, Dec 10, 2019

P Chidambaram’s 106-day incarceration was vengeful, vindictive: Rahul Gandhi

A three-judge bench of the Supreme Court, led by Justice R Banumathi, granted 74-year-old P Chidambaram bail in the INX Media case on Wednesday morning.

india Updated: Dec 04, 2019 16:06 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
Rahul Gandhi said he was confident that P Chidambaram will be able to prove his innocence in a fair trial/
Rahul Gandhi said he was confident that P Chidambaram will be able to prove his innocence in a fair trial/(Rahul Gandhi/Facebook)
         

Congress leader Rahul Gandhi on Wednesday tweeted that the incarceration of former finance minister P Chidambaram in the INX Media case was “vengeful and vindictive”.

“Mr P Chidambaram’s 106 day incarceration was vengeful and vindictive. I’m glad that the SC [Supreme Court] has granted him bail. I’m confident that he will be able to prove his innocence in a fair trial,” Gandhi tweeted.

A three-judge bench of the top court led by Justice R Banumathi granted 74-year-old Chidambaram bail on Wednesday morning.

The court said that Chidambaram cannot leave the country without its permission and restrained Chidambaram from giving any press interview or making statements regarding the case. He was ordered to be released on a personal bond of Rs 2 lakh with two sureties of the same amount.

The ED had opposed Chidambaram’s bail petition claiming that he might tamper with evidence.

“The appellant [Chidambaram] is not in political power nor is he holding any post in the government of the day so as to be in a position to interfere. In that view such allegation cannot be accepted on its face value,” the court said.

Chidambaram was arrested by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) on August 21 from his house in Delhi’s Jor Bagh. He was also arrested by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) in a related case.

He was granted bail in the CBI case on October 22 but an appeal for reprieve in the ED case was rejected by the Delhi high court. After the setback in the high court, Chidambaram’s lawyers had approached the Supreme Court.

In 2017, CBI had registered a case alleging irregularities in a Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB) clearance granted to the INX Media group for receiving overseas funds to the tune of Rs 305 crore when Chidambaram was the finance minister. A year later, ED lodged a money laundering case.

The former minister has been in custody since August 21 when he was arrested by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) in the INX Media corruption case. On October 16, the ED arrested him in the money laundering case. Six days later, on October 22, the apex court granted him bail in the case lodged by the CBI.

Chidambaram’s family had alleged that he was made a target of “vendetta politics” by the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-led government at the Centre.

Soon after Chidambaram got bail, the Congress tweeted from its official handle. “Truth finally prevails #SatyamevaJayate,” the party tweeted.

 

The BJP took the occasion to target Congress president Sonia Gandhi and her son Rahul Gandhi.

“Classic case of @INCIndia ‘Celebrating Corruption’!! “So finally Chidambaram too joins the long list of “OOBC(Out On Bail Club)” in the Congress ..He joins the coveted Club,some members of which are:1)Sonia Gandhi 2)Rahul Gandhi 3)Robert Vadra 4)Motilal Vohra 5)Bhupinder Hooda 6)Sashi Tharoor Etc Etc,” BJP national spokesperson Sambit Patra tweeted.