Centre rubbishes Chidambaram’s allegations, says CBI only doing its duty

Bengaluru (Karnataka) [India], May 16 : Downplaying former finance minister P. Chidambaram's allegations of being silenced through the Central Bureau of Investigation, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Tuesday said the probe agency is only doing its duty of targeting black money and corruption.

Union Minister Ananth Kumar said the probe agencies tend to do investigation whenever they get leads of illegal money, black money and corruption.

"The agencies have been doing this since years. Wherever they get leads of illegal money, black money and major corruption, they tend to do this investigation.

It is targeted against black money and corruption," Kumar said. Another Union Minister Bandaru Dattatreya said the Centre is only chasing corruption in order to eradicate it completely.

"The Modi Government will not differentiate between opposition and ruling or anybody. It is only going for elimination of corruption," Dattatreya said. Meanwhile, Karti Chidambaram was taken for questioning by the CBI following raids at his Chennai residence.

An FIR has also been lodged against Karti and former INX Media director Peter Mukerjea's wife Indrani.

Also, Peter's Mumbai residence has also been raided by the CBI. According to reports, the raids are being conducted in about 15 locations across the country. The raids are to do with a particular deal which involved required permissions being given to a TV channel, and that the deal was linked to Indrani Mukherjee and her company INX Media.

INX Media operated channels like NewsX, 9X and 9X Music. It is alleged that while the clearance was only for Rs. 4 crore, the actual foreign investment was much higher, and this was allowed because Karti allegedly facilitated the deal.

The CBI is also investigating a money trail and the bribe allegedly given to Karti. According to reports, on Sept 22, 2008, Karti's Advantage Strategic Consulting Private Limited (ASCPL) allegedly received Rs.

35 Lakhs from INX Media, on the same day another Rs.60 lakh was allegedly paid from INX Media to Northstar Software Solutions Pvt Ltd.

On September 24, 2008, another tranche of 20,000 Dollars were allegedly paid to ASCPL's Singapore subsidiary by INX Media.

The involvement of P. Chidambaram is also being investigated, since he was a Union Minister then. Earlier, On 17 April, the Enforcement Directorate (ED) said it had issued notice to Vasan Health Care Pvt Ltd, its promoter Karti, and Advantage Strategic Consulting for violating foreign currency laws to the tune of Rs 2,307 crore.

Meanwhile, the CBI is expected to raid Chidambaram's native place in Karaikudi also. The raids are happening at around 14 different locations in Chennai and also in the national capital in connection with the criminal misconduct in grant of FIPB approval.

Source: ANI