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Wednesday, Aug 21, 2019

Money laundering case: ED moves CBI court in Mumbai seeking Indrani Mukerjea’s custody

Mukerjea and others including Karti Chidambaram, son of former Union minister P Chidambaram have been booked by ED for money laundering

mumbai Updated: Sep 06, 2017 00:12 IST
Charul Shah
Charul Shah
Hindustan Times
Peter and Indrani Mukherjea
Peter and Indrani Mukherjea(HT FILE)

The Enforcement Directorate (ED) on Monday approached special CBI court seeking custody of Indrani Mukerjea in connection with a money laundering case related to INX Media.

Mukerjea and others including Karti Chidambaram, son of former Union minister P Chidambaram have been booked by ED for money laundering in connection with the deal related to INX Media. 

ED has approached the special court in Mumbai as Mukerjea is presently facing a trial before the CBI court in the Sheena Bora murder case. The agency had last month obtained a production warrant from the Delhi court for her interrogation in connection with the deals and money laundering allegations. 

The court has now asked CBI to respond to ED’s plea and it would be heard later in the week. 

The allegation of money laundering dates back to May when CBI registered a case regarding irregularities in granting Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB) clearance to INX Media. The investigative agency had registered a case on May 15 this year regarding alleging irregularities in granting the Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB) clearance to INX Media in 2007, when Chidambaram was the finance minister. 

The agency has registered the case against INX Media through its director Peter, Indrani, Karti Chidambaram, Chess Management Services (a company of Karti), Advantage Strategic Consulting Limited through its director Padma Vishwanathan. 

It was alleged that clearance was obtained through Chess Management, company owned by Karti. Further it was alleged that he received kickbacks from the media house while his father was the finance minister. This was allegedly in return for the latter’s help in getting the finance ministry to overlook irregularities at the company. 

Two days after CBI’s action, ED too initiated probe for money laundering against all the accused. During their probe ED had approached a court in Delhi for production warrant against Indrani to interrogate her in connection with the deal. The court allowed their plea and issued a production warrant for Mukerjea.

Hear Peter’s plea for Arms case diary again, orders HC

The Bombay high court on Monday struck down a lower court order rejecting former media baron Peter Mukerjea’s plea seeking the case diary in the arms case registered against accused-turned-approver Shyamvar Rai in the Sheena Bora murder case. The HC has asked the lower court to hear the plea again.

Justice AM Badar of the HC said,“The trial court proceeded on a wrong assumption that the statements of the two police officers – Ganesh Dalvi and Dinesh Kadam, who had apprehended Shyamvar Rai in the arms case – were available in the charge-sheet in the arms case and therefore decided to not call for the case diary.” 

The HC said the trial court failed to ascertain the “necessity and desirability of the case diary for the trial [of Sheena Bora murder case] and so it was necessary to send the matter back to the trial court for fresh adjudication.”

On August 21, 2015 Shyamvar Rai, who worked as a driver for Peter’s wife Indrani, was arrested by a team attached to Khar police station when he was found moving suspiciously. The police recovered a pistol and three live cartridges from him and booked him under relevant sections of the Arms Act. 

During interrogation, Rai disclosed about the killing of Sheena, Indrani’s daughter purportedly from her first relationship. On the basis of his revelation, police inspector Ganesh Dalvi registered a new FIR against Rai and his employer, Peter’s wife Indrani and her ex-husband Sanjeev Khanna.  Now, Khanna has turned approver in the murder case and Peter wanted the diary of the arms case to confront him in the trial.

First Published: Sep 05, 2017 01:07 IST

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