A special Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) court on Thursday extended the judicial custody of senior Congress leader and former Union finance minister P. Chidambaram till 3 October in a money laundering and corruption case related to INX Media, following a request by the investigating agency.
“This court has considered the grounds for police custody and thereafter for judicial custody and granted remand accordingly. There is no change in the circumstances as such. It is not a case where no case is made out against the accused. The investigation is still in progress. The accused has already applied for bail before Delhi high court. Therefore, as per the understanding of this court, the judicial remand of the accused has to be extended. Accordingly, the judicial remand of the accused is extended till 3 October," the court said.
Advocate Kapil Sibal, who appeared for Chidambaram, also moved a plea seeking regular medical checkup and adequate supplementary diet during the judicial custody in Tihar jail. Chidambaram is suffering from various ailments and has lost weight during the judicial custody, to which he was sent on 5 September, Sibal said.
“The health of any inmate is of concern. Whatever is permissible in law, would be done by jail authorities," submitted solicitor general Tushar Mehta.
“It is directed that the medical records submitted by the accused today be sent to superintendent, central jail, Tihar, who shall ensure that the accused is examined medically for his illness at the jail hospital and, if required, be examined in a multi-disciplinary hospital such as AIIMS, Safdarjung Hospital or Dr RML Hospital. So far as providing a chair and pillow to the accused is concerned, the jail superintendent shall consider the request favourably, considering the issue of back pain of the accused," the court said.
CBI had on 15 May 2017 registered a first information report against Chidambaram for alleged irregularities in the Foreign Investment Promotion Board clearance given to INX Media for receiving foreign funds of ₹305 crore in 2007 when he was the finance minister. The Enforcement Directorate lodged money laundering cases against him in 2018. Chidambaram was arrested on 21 August.
Also on Thursday, the same special court adjourned hearing on arguments on the bail plea of Karnataka Congress leader D.K. Shivakumar, who was arrested in a money laundering case. The arguments will continue on Saturday.
Several agencies have been probing Shivakumar’s assets for two years now. In August 2017, the income tax (I-T) department raided several premises owned by the Congress leader, his family, and associates and claimed to have unearthed crores of rupees in unaccounted for income.
This story has been published from a wire agency feed without modifications to the text. Only the headline has been changed.