New Delhi: Karti Chidambaram, the son of former Union minister P Chidambaram, walked out of Delhi's Tihar jail this evening after spending 22 days in custody. The 46-year-old businessman, who was being questioned by the Central Bureau of Investigation in connection with a corruption case, got bail from the Delhi High Court this morning.
On March 1, Karti Chidambaram was arrested from Chennai airport minutes after he de-boarded an incoming flight from London. Officials of the CBI, which is handling the case, had said he was not cooperating with the investigators and they wanted to keep him in custody and question him.
He has been accused of getting government clearance for foreign investments worth around Rs. 300 crore in television company INX Media in exchange for bribes in 2007. Investigators said he used the influence of his father, who was the Union Finance Minister in the UPA government.
His arrest took place after Peter and Indrani Mukerjea, who owned INX media at the time, made a series of allegations linking the Karti Chidambaram and P Chidambaram to bribes they claimed they gave. The couple are currently in jail, accused of being involved in the murder of Indrani Mukerjea's daughter Sheena Bora.
While asking for custody, the CBI told a Delhi court that the evidence against Karti Chidambaram was "explosive" and they wanted to present him before other suspects and question them together.
The former minister and his son have called the arrest a case of "political vendetta". Karti Chidambaram has told the court that he was being targetted since he was the son of a politician.
Next month, the Supreme Court is expected to hear an appeal by Karti Chidambaram against an order of the Madras High Court, which had refused to cancel the CBI case against him. The court had also asked him to approach the Delhi High Court for relief.
Karti Chidambaram has been granted relief from arrest by the Enforcement Directorate, from the Delhi High Court. The Supreme Court, which extended the interim relief, has said it would also clarify the "confusion" over the agency's powers to arrest an accused.