Chidambaram, his son face legal trouble; ED to probe his alleged role in Aircel Maxis deal

The Enforcement Directorate will investigate Chidambaram and his son Karti Chidambaram’s alleged role in the Aircel-Maxis deal

In more legal trouble for former finance minister P Chidambaram, the Enforcement Directorate on Monday said that it will investigate his and his son Karti Chidambaram’s alleged role in the Aircel-Maxis deal.

In its status report regarding the violation of Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB), the Enforcement Directorate alleged the role of Chidambaram in the case. The matter will now be heard on May 2.

Earlier in February, the apex court had given Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Subramanian Swamy two weeks to place credible material to prima facie prove that Chidambaram deliberately granted FIPB clearance to the Aircel-Maxis deal in 2006.

Swamy was also asked whether Chidambaram knew that the limit was Rs. 600 crore.

The ED had moved the apex court against the special court’s order in the case, which discharged Maran brothers and other accused without furnishing the bail bond properly. The ED had also urged the apex court not to release the properties attached in the case.

Earlier, Swamy presented his case of an illegality committed by Chidambaram in granting FIPB clearance to the Rs. 3,500 crore deal in 2006.

A Delhi Court had earlier in February discharged former communications minister Dayanidhi Maran and his brother Kalanithi Maran after it found insufficient evidence to prosecute them. Maran brothers were accused by the investigating agencies of helping Malaysian group Maxis to acquire Aircel in exchange for a kickback of approximately Rs. 700 crore.

The court also discharged Kalanithi’s wife Kavery Kalanithi, South Asia FM Ltd (SAFL) Managing Director K. Shanmugam and two companies — SAFL and Sun Direct TV Pvt Ltd (SDTPL) in two different cases.

The Central Bureau of investigation (CBI) Court had on December 19 last year deferred pronouncing its orders against Maran brothers and others to December 22.