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INX Media case: Chidambaram denied protection from arrest by HC, may move Supreme Court

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INX Media case: Chidambaram denied protection from arrest by HC, may move Supreme Court

Congress leader and former finance minister P Chidambaram’s plea seeking anticipatory bail in the corruption and money-laundering cases related to INX Media case was rejected by the Delhi High Court today (Tuesday, Aug 20).

Chidambaram’s lawyers are likely to approach the Supreme Court.

Chidambaram’s role had come under the scanner of the investigating agencies in the Rs 3,500-crore Aircel-Maxis deal and the INX Media case involving Rs 305 crore. It was during his tenure as finance minister in the UPA-I government that clearances from the Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB) were given to the two ventures.

The CBI on May 15, 2017 had registered an FIR against alleged irregularities in the Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB) clearance to INX Media for receiving overseas funds to the tune of Rs 305 crore in 2007 when Chidambaram was the Finance Minister.

Thereafter, the ED had in 2018 lodged the money laundering case in this regard. The Enforcement Directorate had contended that the companies in which money was transferred are directly or indirectly controlled by Chidambaram’s son, Karti, and they have a reason to believe that the FIPB approval was granted to INX Media on his son’s intervention.

Also Read: Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister nephew Ratul Puri arrested in bank fraud case: Congress claims move ‘politically motivated’

The high court had on July 25, 2018 granted interim protection from arrest to Chidambaram in both the cases and it was extended from time to time.

Vacating the order today, Justice Sunil Gaur said, “Both applications (seeking anticipatory bail) are dismissed.”

Senior advocate Dayan Krishnan urged the court that at least two-three days more protection be given to his client. The judge said that it will consider.

The case pertains to alleged financial irregularities in clearances granted when Chidambaram was the Union finance minister. His son Karti Chidambaram is also an accused in the case and was arrested by the CBI on February 28 last year. Later he was granted bail by the Delhi High Court in March.

The Enforcement Directorate has questioned Karti on several occasions in the INX Media case case. P Chidambaram was also questioned by the ED in January this year and on December 19 last year.

The ED has attached properties worth Rs 54 crore belonging to Karti Chidambaram in connection with the case. The agency also attached properties belonging to Indrani and Peter Mukerjea.

On May 31 last year, the former finance minister had moved court, seeking interim protection from arrest in the alleged INX Media corruption case. Subsequently, he was given protection from arrest.

Chidambaram’s petition had said that though no summons had ever been served on him by the ED in this case, he had an apprehension of arrest in view of the summons issued to him by the CBI, which was investigating the scheduled offence.

Chidambaram in his plea before the high court had said that he does not have a copy of the FIR registered by the ED as it has not been provided to him till date.

“He came to know about registration of the FIR from various summons received by his son from the ED, directing Karti to join the investigation,” it had said.

The plea had claimed that during the investigation of the ED’s case, which has been going on for over a year, no summon has been issued to Chidambaram till date, let alone any allegation of him evading the process of law or fleeing from the process of law or interfering with the investigation in any manner.

Also Read: Delhi High Court issues notice to Centre on Shah Faesal’s detention

“There is not even a slightest whisper about his tampering with any evidence or hampering/impeding the process of investigation,” it had said, while seeking the relief.

The CBI had earlier told the court that Chidambaram was needed for custodial interrogation in the INX Media case.

On July 4, a Delhi court had also allowed Indrani Mukerjea, the former head of the INX Media, to turn an approver in the CBI case.

Indrani Mukerjea and her husband Peter Mukherjea, who co-founded INX Media in 2007, had been charged with entering into a criminal conspiracy with Karti Chidambaram, whose father P Chidambaram was the then finance minister, to get foreign investments and evade punitive measures for not having the necessary approvals from the Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB).

In March 2018, Indrani Mukerjea told the CBI in a statement recorded under Section 164 of the CrPC that a deal of $1 million was struck between Karti Chidambaram and the Mukerjeas to secure approval from the FIPB in favour of INX Media. Last month, a Delhi court had allowed Indrani Mukerjea, who is a prime accused in the murder of her daughter Sheena Bora, to turn approver in the INX case.

In her application to turn approver, Mukerjea had prayed for pardon in the case in exchange of full and true disclosure.

India News

Azam Khan lands in trouble for speaking against Election Commission and Police, FIR filed in Rampur

During a meeting in the Rampur by-election, Azam Khan made adverse remarks against the constitutional body, Election Commission and the police.

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Azam Khan lands in trouble for speaking against Election Commission and Police, FIR filed in Rampur

The troubles of senior SP leader Azam Khan are not coming to an end. He has been booked for his comment on Election Commission now. In the latest case, an FIR has been registered against him for targeting the Election Commission and the police.

The case has been registered against Azam Khan on the complaint of Sujesh Kumar in Rampur’s police station and they are is probing the matter. Sujesh Rampur is in charge of the team formed by the Election Commission for the by-election, who looks after the work of video surveillance.

According to the complaint given to the police, during a meeting in the Rampur by-election, Azam Khan made adverse remarks against the constitutional body, Election Commission and the police. He was addressing a gathering in support of SP candidate Asim Raza.

It is being told that Azam Khan in his address to the SP supported had said, “come here, Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) and give the certificate of MLA, we will also clap like fools. You can’t alone fool around, allow us too,” as quoted in the complaint.

Reportedly, he had further said that one cannot govern and fool around at the same time and a country cannot be run like that. It is being alleged in the complaint that Azam Khan has tried to disturb the public peace by creating and inciting hatred among the people present in the public meeting and has also violated the code of conduct.

SP president Akhilesh Yadav was also present at the public meet on Thursday. He had also addressed the gathering to garner support for the party’s nominee Asim Raza in Rampur Sadar constituency.

For the unversed, about a month ago, the court of Rampur had sentenced Azam Khan in a case of hate speech, which also made him lose his legislature. On the other hand, seems like he is on the hit list of BJP as the Yogi government is registering cases against him one after the other.

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Hyderabad University suspends professor accused of molesting foreign student, detained by Cyberabad Police

On Saturday, a large number of students raised slogans and also protested in the university campus.

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Hyderabad University suspends professor accused of molesting foreign student, detained by Cyberabad Police

A case of alleged molestation of an international student (of foreign origin) by a Hindi professor has come to light in the University of Hyderabad main campus. Hundred of Students have sat on protested in the University of Hyderabad campus on Saturday.

Cyberabad police have taken the professor into custody after the complaint was filed in the University and the outrage reached the internet. After the professor was detained, the Hyderabad University has condemned the incident and suspended the accused professor.

Earlier, Shilpavalli of Hyderabad Police’s DCP Madhapur told that the Cyberabad Police of Telangana has taken a professor of Hyderabad University into custody on charges of molesting a foreign student. The student is a resident of Thailand and is doing her graduation from the University of Hyderabad. The matter is being thoroughly investigated by the Telangana Police.

Accused professor has been suspended with immediate effect

The University of Hyderabad has also issued an official statement regarding the entire episode. The university administration said that the institution condemns the incident that took place on December 2 between Professor Ravi Ranjan, Department of Hindi, and the foreign student. Based on the criminal complaint and FIR, the accused professor has been placed under suspension with immediate effect.

There was anger among the students since this incident. On Saturday, a large number of students raised slogans and also protested in the university campus. Several pictures from the protest has reached the internet. And tweeple have not only expressed their grief towards the foreign student but have also condemned the professor for turning into a nightmare.

Several users tweeted in anger and wrote that in a society where teachers, who are said to be our morale guide and mentors will only turn into a horror, where will this society moving towards. Another user wrote that in times like these we realize why it is so important to have a better way to appoint teachers and have a regular check on them.


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Election Commission reacts to 63.3 percent voter turnout in Gujarat, blames apathy in cities

The counting of votes will take place on December 8. The first phase of polling was held on Thursday for 89 seats in Saurashtra, Kutch and South Gujarat.

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Election Commission reacts to 63.3 percent voter turnout in Gujarat, blames apathy in cities

The Election Commission on Monday made a special appeal to voters ahead of the second phase of Gujarat elections. EC urged to remove the apathy regarding the voting seen in the urban areas in the last phase.

In the first phase of Gujarat elections, the polling in Surat, Rajkot and Jamnagar was lower than the state average of 63.3 per cent, as quoted by the the Election Commission in a statement. In the first phase of the 2017 elections in the state, the voter turnout was 66.75 percent.

The commission said that while the polling percentage increased in many constituencies, the average polling figure fell short of urban apathy in important districts. EC further said that even during the recent Himachal Pradesh assembly elections, the urban assembly constituency of Shimla showed the lowest turnout. The voter turnout was recorded at 62.53 percent (down by 13 percent) against the state average of 75.6 percent.

The Election Commission further said that cities in Gujarat have shown a similar trend of urban apathy in the assembly elections from December 1 which has led to a lower turnout in the first phase.

The high-voltage campaign for the second and final phase of the Gujarat assembly elections ended at 5 pm on Saturday. Over 800 candidates are in the fray in 93 constituencies spread across 14 districts in north and central Gujarat, including Ahmedabad, Vadodara and Gandhinagar.

The counting of votes will take place on December 8. The first phase of polling was held on Thursday for 89 seats in Saurashtra, Kutch and South Gujarat. Prominent candidates in the second phase include Chief Minister Bhupendra Patel from Ghatlodiya, Patidar leader Hardik Patel from Viramgam and Other Backward Classes (OBC) leader Alpesh Thakor from Gandhinagar South.

For the unversed, Hardik Patel and Thakor are both BJP candidates. The main contest in the election is between the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), the Congress and the Arvind Kejriwal-led Aam Aadmi Party (AAP).

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