Former Union minister P Chidambaram was on Wednesday questioned by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) in connection with the INX Media money laundering case, official sources said.
He arrived at the agency's office in Jamnagar House, near India Gate, at around 11:15 am along with his lawyer. This is the first time that the 73-year-old former finance and home minister is being grilled by the ED in this case.
Sources said the senior Congress leader was asked to depose before the investigating officer (IO) of the case to record his statement under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) and was given a time for Wednesday.
It has earlier questioned him in the Aircel-Maxis PMLA case. The Delhi High Court, last month, had extended till January 15 the interim protection from arrest granted to Chidambaram on his pleas seeking anticipatory bail in the INX Media case lodged by both the ED and the CBI.
The court had also directed him to cooperate with the investigation. The central probe agency has questioned Chidambaram's son Karti Chidambaram in the INX Media case in the past and has also attached his assets worth an estimated Rs 54 crore, located in India and abroad.
The ED had registered a PMLA case in this deal case on the basis of a CBI FIR and had 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 when P Chidambaram was the Union finance minister.
It had registered an Enforcement Case Information Report (ECIR), the ED's equivalent of a police FIR, against the accused named in a CBI complaint, including Karti Chidambaram, INX Media and its directors Peter and Indrani Mukerjea.
Karti Chidambaram was also arrested on February 28 by the CBI for allegedly taking money to facilitate the FIPB clearance to INX Media in 2007. He was later granted bail.