The Supreme Court on Friday permitted Congress MP Karti Chidambaram to withdraw Rs 20 crore deposited by him with the apex court registry as a condition for being allowed to travel abroad.
In January and May 2019, the court had granted Karti Chidambaram, son of former Union finance minister P Chidambaram, permission to travel to foreign countries after depositing Rs 10 crore each respectively with its Secretary-General.
The relief to Karti Chidamabaram was granted by a bench headed by Chief Justice SA Bobde after Solicitor General Tushar Mehta submitted that the Enforcement Directorate had no objection to his petition to withdraw the amount since he has returned.
In view of Mehta’s submission, the bench, also comprising Justices BR Gavai and Surya Kant, allowed the Congress MP to withdraw the deposit.
The condition was imposed on Karti Chidambaram, who is facing ED cases in INX Media and Aircel-Maxis matters, after the agency had opposed his plea to visit foreign countries.
The apex court had allowed Karti Chidambaram to travel to the United States, Spain and Germany in May and June 2019. Karti Chidambaram has been questioned on several occasions in the INX media case in which both the ED and Central Bureau of Investigation are probing how he managed to obtain clearance to the tune of Rs 305 crore from the Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB) in 2007 when his father was the finance minister.
The ED had registered a PMLA (Prevention of Money Laundering Act) case based on the FIR by the CBI and alleged that irregularities took place in the FIPB clearance to INX Media for receiving overseas funds to the tune of Rs 305 crore in 2007.