Aircel-Maxis case: ED questions Chidambaram for 7 hours
Chidambaram says he was questioned by ED but there is no FIR and no offence is alleged
New Delhi: Senior Congress leader and former Union finance minister P. Chidambaram was quizzed for seven hours by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) on Tuesday in connection with the Aircel-Maxis money laundering case.
Earlier Chidambaram was granted an interim relief from arrest by a Delhi special court till 10 July.
“Another round of questions by the ED...there is no FIR and no offence is alleged,” Chidambaram said in a post on Twitter.
In April, son Karti Chidambaram was also questioned by the agency.
The father-son duo are being investigated by the ED and the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) for allegedly receiving kickbacks in lieu of the Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB) clearance for the Aircel-Maxis deal in 2006, when Chidambaram was the finance minister in the Congress-led United Progressive Alliance government.
ED has claimed that Aircel Televentures Ltd paid ₹26 lakh to Advantage Strategic Consulting Pvt. Ltd (ASCPL) within a few days of the FIPB approval. Karti Chidambaram controlled ASCPL through S. Bhaskararaman, who was described as a chartered accountant.
The agency said its probe has revealed that the case of the said foreign direct investment was “wrongly projected as an investment of ₹180 crore so that it need not be sent to the CCEA (Cabinet Committee on Economic Affairs) to avoid a detailed scrutiny”.
The father-son duo are also being investigated for the INX Media deal. ED has been conducting searches across premises linked to P. Chidambaram and his son.
Priyanka Mittal contributed to this story.