A day after former finance minister P Chidambaram was arrested in connection with the INX Media case late on Wednesday night, the Congress slammed the Narendra Modi government saying that it was using the “CBI and the ED as personal revenge-seeking departments.”
Addressing a Congress press conference on senior leader P Chidambaram’s arrest, party spokesperson Randeep Singh Surjewala said, “the vindictive and malicious manner in which the former Home and Finance minister has been persecuted and prosecuted, shows malice by the Modi government”.
This happens while the economy is suffering and the rupee has been the worst-performing currency, he added.
He further stated that apart from wanting to tarnish the image and reputation of the “honourable and respected” former union minister, there was “no other reason” to send the CBI and ED and arrest him from his home in the manner in which it was done.
“The person and company which is central to the case are roaming freely both in and out of the country. The signing authority of the FIPB is roaming freely but a person who has nothing to do with the FIPB has been arrested,” Surjewala.
P Chidambaram was arrested by the Central Bureau of Investigation on Wednesday evening after high drama outside his South Delhi home.
Reacting on the development, Congress leader Salman Khurshid told ANI that “It is deeply distressing that all that had to happen; there was no question of not being answerable to the law”.
“The matter is listed on Friday, they could have waited till then to see what the Supreme Court wants to do,” he added.
Lawyer and Congress leader Kapil Sibal on Thursday said that it was a “matter of great concern as members of the legal fraternity as well as citizens of the country”.
“All we wanted was a hearing; the presiding judge chose instead to say that I am sending the file to CJI. Isn’t a citizen entitled to be heard?” he asked.
Immediately after his arrest by the CBI, P Chidambaram was taken to the CBI headquarters where he spent the night.
Meanwhile, formal questioning of Chidambaram started from 10 am today by the investigation team led by Parthasarathy, Deputy SP.
After questioning, the Congress leader will be produced at Special CBI Court, Rouse Avenue post 12 noon.
The CBI is investigating alleged irregularities in the Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB) clearance granted to INX Media for receiving overseas funds to the tune of Rs 305 crore in 2007 when P Chidambaram was the Finance Minister.
It is alleged that his son Karti Chidambaram illegally took service charges for getting the FIPB clearance to the INX Media for receiving funds from abroad.