As the Enforcement Directorate (ED) on Saturday conducted searches at multiple premises linked to Karti Chidambaram, his father and senior Congress leader P Chidambaram slammed the agency and said that it had no jurisdiction to carry out the raids.
“They (ED officials) searched and found nothing but since they had to justify themselves they took papers of a statement made by government in Parliament, few years back,” said Chidambaram reacting to the raids that were carried out in connection with a money laundering probe in the Aircel- Maxis case.
“The ED has no jurisdiction to investigate under PMLA (Prevention of Money Laundering Act),” he added.
The Congress leader further said that there was no FIR concerning a scheduled crime by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) or any agency.
The ED conducted raids in Delhi and Chennai since early morning after similar searches on the premises of a relative of Karti on December 1, 2017.
The ED case pertains to the Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB) approval granted in 2006 by the then finance minister P Chidambaram.
The agency had said it is investigating the circumstances of the said FIPB approval granted by the then finance minister (P Chidambaram)”.
The ED also alleged that Karti has “disposed” of a property in Gurgaon, which he had allegedly rented out to a multinational company “to whom foreign direct investment (FDI) approval had been granted in 2013”.
It charged that Karti had “also closed certain bank accounts and attempted to close other bank accounts in order to frustrate the process of attachment” under the PMLA.
The agency said FIPB approval in the Aircel-Maxis FDI case was granted in March, 2006 by the then FM even though he was competent to accord approval on project proposals only up to Rs 600 crore and beyond that it required the approval of the Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs (CCEA).
(With inputs from agencies)