Opinion

Witch hunt against Chidambaram and family still alive

So here are some facts. The Aircel-Maxis case has been quashed by Judge O P Saini in February this year. Therefore, any rational person would think that there is no further investigation is possible. Hence, Monday’s news reports that the CBI will file a status report on the Aircel-Maxis case on May 2.

The CBI had filed a report in September 2015. Chidambaram too filed an affidavit in the Madras High Court in December last year. But there has been no counter to this affidavit.

The 2015 CBI report on the Foreign Investment and Promotion Board (FIPB) clearance given to Aircel-Maxis deal in 2006 was filed through Senior Counsel KK Venugopal. The case made was that the FIPB had bypassed the Cabinet Committee for Economic Affairs (CCEA). Finance ministry officials however, have clarified that it was as per the erstwhile policy, which allowed the FIPB to give its nod without directing the case to the CCEA.

Chidambaram gave a statement to the CBI in December, 2014. In December 2016, he filed an affidavit in the Madras High Court in his son Karti’s case against Enforcement Directorate (ED). So what else is the CBI going to further file? One again wonders that what could have transpired between 2015 and 2017 for the CBI to file a fresh report?

If they are indeed investigating something, then it must surely be a new case. So why not be more transparent and reveal further details about the case?

Media reports on Monday also first said that the ED has also filed a report. ED gets jurisdiction to investigate only when another primary investigating agency registers a case. No case was registered against Karti and no notice has been sent either. A suo moto case by Subramanian Swamy doesn’t also make him a party to any case. And the case in Aircel-Maxis has been quashed by Saini. So again, is this a new case?

Through this legal tussle one thing is certain, the witch-hunt against P Chidambaram and family is still very much on. And will it keep happening every time the former FM criticizes the govt? Only a few days ago, Chidambaram had said that he saw the dawn of an Orwellian India. Is it also coincidence that former Himachal Pradesh CM, Virbhadra Singh’s Delhi property worth Rs 27 crore has been attached by the ED.

On the other hand, the apex court has granted relief to former Karnataka CM SM Krishna who has recently joined the BJP. The apex court asked SIT to file a report in three months and stayed all High Court proceedings asking not to pass any order in it. So the question remains…Is all this vendetta politics against Congress leaders?

Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this article are the personal opinions of the author. The facts and opinions appearing in the article do not reflect the views of NEWSD and NEWSD does not assume any responsibility or liability for the same.

Gaurav Pandhi is associated with Indian National Congress' Digital Communications. He tweets at @GauravPandhi

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