What Exactly Is The Case Against Karti Chidambaram? 10-Point Guide

What Exactly Is The Case Against Karti Chidambaram? 10-Point Guide

Karti Chidambaram was arrested at Chennai Airport on Wednesday


  • CBI: Karti Chidambaram facilitated FDI approvals for a TV company
  • CBI: Karti facilitated approvals when his father was finance minister
  • CBI: Karti helped ex bosses of INX Media when they faced tax issues
New Delhi: The arrest of Karti Chidambaram, son of former finance minister P Chidambaram, by the CBI early on Wednesday has triggered a fierce back-and-forth between the Congress and the ruling BJP. The agency alleges Karti Chidambaram, 46, facilitated foreign investment approvals for a television company when his father was finance minister and was paid bribes for it. The Congress called the arrest a reflection of vendetta politics but Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad hit back, saying the nature of evidence available against the offender "must speak for itself and not the alibi of vendetta".

Here is a 10-point cheat sheet to this story:

  1. The CBI raided the former minister and his son in May last year after registering a case against him. It alleged Karti Chidambaram helped Indrani and Peter Mukerjea, former media bosses who founded the INX Media group, when it faced questions from the Income Tax Department.

  2. In March 2007, the Mukerjeas - who are currently in jail on charges of murdering Indrani's daughter Sheena Bora - sought a Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB) approval to raise Rs 4.62 crore from foreign companies. The company also asked for permission to make a 26 per cent investment in INX News.

  3. The FIPB, a panel comprising five-six top bureaucrats, cleared the proposal to raise Rs 4.62 crore in May 2007, not the second one to make 26 per cent investment into INX News.

  4. But INX Media, according to the CBI, generated more than Rs 305 crore by issuing shares at a premium of more than Rs 800 apiece. It also invested 26 per cent in INX News without permission.

  5. When the foreign investment board, at the instance of the income tax authorities asked INX to explain the violation, they television company allegedly approached Karti Chidambaram for help to settle the matter.

  6. INX Media responded to the FIPB query on 26 June 2008. CBI alleges the same day, Advantage Consulting, a company linked to Karti Chidambaram raised the first invoice of Rs 10 lakh.

  7. The finance ministry advised INX Media to seek permission to invest into INX News. Around the same time, the CBI says Advantage Consulting and its associate companies raised four more invoices for about $ 7,00,000 (Rs 3.10 crore).

  8. Once the new proposal was sent, FIPB gave its approval despite opposition from the tax department. The Finance Minister signed off on the new recommendation, legalising what the company had already done without permission.

  9. Karti Chidambaram denies that he had a role to play in Advantage Strategic Consulting's affairs and the CBI was attempting to entangle him into its contract with INX Media.

  10. Former Union Minister P Chidambaram counters the CBI allegations, saying he had as finance minister, only gone by the recommendation of the panel of senior officers.