Arun Jaitley
Finance Minister Arun JaitleyReuters

Finance Minister Arun Jaitley on Tuesday defended the raids that were conducted at the residences of his predecessor P Chidambaram and his son Karti Chidambaram and Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) chief Lalu Prasad. Jaitley said that the "day of reckoning" had come for several and that they will be held accountable for indulging in corrupt activities.

Jaitley on Tuesday told reporters that the Income Tax Department and the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) act only if there is a "substantial basis and a reason to suspect" that a tax evasion or a crime has been committed. 

"Now people in high positions acquiring assets through shell companies is not a small matter and I think the day of reckoning has come for many, they will all be held accountable," Jaitley said in response to charges by the Opposition against the Centre of using the CBI and the I-T Department to go after opposition leaders.

"Unless there is a substantial basis and a reason to suspect that either there is evasion or a crime has been committed, these departments don't act. Because ultimately whatever action that is taken has to bear some results," Jaitley added.

The CBI on Tuesday carried out raids at the residences of former Finance Minister P Chidambaram and his son Karti Chidambaram in connection with the alleged criminal misconduct while granting the Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB) approval to INX Media Pvt Ltd to sell their stakes to offshore entities. An FIR was also registered against Karti, Indrani and Peter Mukerjea in the Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB) approval case for INX Media in 2007-08.

The same day the I-T Department carried out raids and surveys at 22 locations in New Delhi and adjoining areas over alleged benami deals to the tune of Rs 1,000 crore involving Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) chief Lalu Prasad Yadav and others.