CBI raids premises of three friends of Karti Chidambaram

With the CBI raiding Chidambaram's residence yesterday in connection with the FIPB approval in several cases, the senior Congress leader and former union minister lashed out at the Centre, accusing it of using national agencies to target his son.

The CBI alleged Karti used his connections to tweak the rules and get a clearance for getting foreign funds for INX Media. It is also being said that the raids are linked to clearances given to INX media, which was once owned by Peter Mukerjea.

The FIR also alleges that invoices of approximately Rs 3.5 crore were raised in favour of INX group in the name of other companies in which Karti had substantial interests "directly or indirectly".

Giving details of the case that led to registration of the FIR, the CBI official said INX media moved an application in the month of March 2007 to bring 46.2 per cent of foreign issued equity, which amounted to Rs 4.6 core from three entities which were based in Mauritius.

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Besides Karti, those named in the FIR include INX Director Indrani Mukherjea and her husband Peter Mukherjea, both accused in the Sheena Bora murder case, and some unknown officials of the ministry. However, his personal secretary Murali Venugopal said, "Karti Chidambaram has switched off all his phones and he is not taking any calls".

On the same day, the Income Tax (I-T) Department raided over 22 locations in a separate investigation into the chief of political party Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) and another vocal Modi critic, Lalu Prasad Yadav, the Business Standard reported.

The FIPB did not clear the 26% investment into INX News and asked the company to seek fresh approval.

It is then that INX Media approached Karti, promoter director of Chess Management Service (P) Ltd, to "amicably" resolve the issue by "influencing the public servants of the FIPB unit of Ministry of Finance by virtue of his relationship with the then Finance Minister, P Chidambaram".

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Karti said he had committed no crime and the case against him was foisted on account of political vendetta.

Indian law enforcement officers Tuesday raided the residences and properties of top opposition leaders and businessmen as part of a multi-city crackdown on alleged corruption.

The former chief minister of Bihar, whose party is now part of the eastern state's ruling alliance, was previously convicted of corruption in 2013. "There is no allegation against me", he said.

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