INX case: ED attaches Karti’s properties in India, abroad

New Delhi: The Enforcement Directorate (ED) on Thursday said it has attached properties worth Rs 54 crore belonging to former Union Finance Minister P Chidambaram’s son Karti Chidambaram (pictured) and a firm in connection with the INX Media money laundering case.
Karti Chidambram described the agency’s move as “bizarre and outlandish” and said he would take legal action against it.
A senior ED official said: “We have attached six properties of Karti worth Rs 54 crore.” The properties include a cottage worth Rs 8.67 crore in the UK’s Somerset, a tennis club and land located in Spain’s Gava worth Rs 14 crore.
Besides the foreign properties, the ED also attached land and properties worth Rs 16 crore in New Delhi’s Jor Bagh, in which Karti’s mother Nalini Chidambaram is a 50 per cent stakeholder, and two bungalows in Tamil Nadu’s Ooty — one worth Rs 50 lakh and another Rs 3.75 crore, besides an agricultural land worth Rs 25 lakh in Kodaikanal in the same state.
Fixed deposits belonging to the firm Advantage Strategic Consulting Pvt Ltd (ASCPL) worth Rs 90 lakh, kept in a Chennai bank, were also attached. The assets are in the name of Karti Chidambaram and ASCPL — the firm allegedly linked to him.
The ED has also attached properties belonging to Peter and Indrani Mukerjea in connection with the same case.
The ED said the investigation conducted so far shows that for the approval of Foreign Investment Promotion Board (FIPB), Peter and Indrani Mukerjea met then Finance Minister P Chidambaram, so that there was no hold-up or delay in their application.
“P Chidambaram asked for his son’s business interests to be kept in mind. The ED identified payments of Rs 3.09 crore by Peter Mukerjea to ASCPL and associated entities controlled by Karti P Chidambaram through manipulated debit notes. “During the investigation, it was admitted that debit notes were raised on the directions of Karti Chidambaram to show some transactions which in fact did not occur,” the agency alleged. — IANS