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Politics India

SC releases P Chidambaram on bail

He had spent 106 days in jail following arrest by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) in a money laundering case

Sabrangindia 05 Dec 2019

chidambaram

106 days after he was arrested, P Chidambaram walked of Tihar jail a free man on Wednesday after the Supreme Court granted him bail in the money laundering case lodged against him by the Enforcement Directorate (ED).

Stepping out of jail, he was greeted by his son Karti Chidambaram and other Congress leaders. The former Finance Minister has been granted bail in the INX Media case on a bond of Rs. 2 lakh with two sureties each and with the condition of him not leaving the country without permission. Other conditions of his bail are as follows:
 

· He shall not tamper with evidence or influence witnesses

· He shall make himself available for interrogation for further investigation whenever required

· His passport shall remain deposited in court


The three-judge bench comprising of Justice R Banumathi, Justice AS Bopanna and Justice Hrishikesh Royset agreed with the HC order that economic offences came under the category of grave offences. However, it noted that denying bail was the exception to the law of basic jurisprudence. It said that the grant of bail continued to hold field to ensure that the accused had their chance at seeking a fair trial.

The senior Congress leader addressed his first press conference after being granted bail on Thursday, December 5, 2019. Expressing gratitude for his release, Chidambaram said that he would not comment on the case as it was sub-judice and instead turned to speak about matters related to the economy.

He said, “The government is wrong. It is wrong because it is clueless. It is unable to look for the obvious clues because it is stubborn and mulish in defending its catastrophic mistakes like demonetisation, flawed GST, tax terrorism, regulatory overkill, protectionism, and centralized control of decision-making in the PMO.”

Calling out PM Modi on his silence related to the economic slowdown he said, “The Prime Minister has been unusually silent on the economy. He has left it to his ministers to indulge in bluff and bluster. The net result, as The Economist put it, is that the government has turned out to be an ‘incompetent manager’ of the economy.”

Speaking about the Modi government, he said, “Government is calling the present slowdown ‘cyclical’. Thank god they have not called it ‘seasonal’. It is ‘structural’ and the government has no solutions or reforms that would address the structural problems.”

Citing that the UPA lifted 140 million people out of poverty between 2004 and 2014, he accused the NDA saying that it has, since 2016, “pushed millions of people below the poverty line.”

Addressing the people, he asked them to pay close attention to the numbers that pointed in the direction of a “floundering economy.”

He expressed his optimism about the economy coming out of the slump and that parties other than the BJP were better for the job, saying, “The economy can be brought out of the slowdown, but this government is incapable of doing that. I believe that the Congress and some other parties are better equipped to pull the economy out of the slowdown and push economic growth, but we have to wait for better times.”

He also attacked Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman in Parliament today for saying that her family didn’t eat onions – this especially at a time when consumers are struggling to buy the key food staple that is priced at Rs. 120 per kg.

"That shows the mindset of this government," he said and was later seen joining a protest by the Congress at Parliament against rising onion prices.

Speaking to the media about Kashmir he said, “As I stepped out and breathed the air of freedom at 8 pm last night, my first thought and prayers were for the 75 lakh people of the Kashmir Valley who have been denied their basic freedoms since August 4, 2019. I am particularly concerned about the political leaders who have been detained without charges. Freedom is indivisible: if we must preserve our freedom, we must fight for their freedom.”

One cannot forget the witch-hunt the CBI / Ed went on trying to arrest Chidambaram. The event was played on every TV screen in India. After the high-voltage drama that lasted for over an hour, Chidambaram was taken for a medical check-up and then to the CBI headquarters.

Congress leaders had then vehemently accused the BJP of misusing its power and arm-wresting national agencies to fulfil their agenda against the leaders of the Opposition Party.

It looks like the SC has overstepped the BJP and finally taken back charge of the investigation. Will it face any repercussions by the autocratic Centre or will it retain its autonomy in judicial matters?


Related:

Karnataka High Court quashes Enforcement Directorate’s order of freezing Greenpeace India’s bank accounts
What Happened to Tax Investigations on Ambanis?

SC releases P Chidambaram on bail

He had spent 106 days in jail following arrest by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) in a money laundering case

chidambaram

106 days after he was arrested, P Chidambaram walked of Tihar jail a free man on Wednesday after the Supreme Court granted him bail in the money laundering case lodged against him by the Enforcement Directorate (ED).

Stepping out of jail, he was greeted by his son Karti Chidambaram and other Congress leaders. The former Finance Minister has been granted bail in the INX Media case on a bond of Rs. 2 lakh with two sureties each and with the condition of him not leaving the country without permission. Other conditions of his bail are as follows:
 

· He shall not tamper with evidence or influence witnesses

· He shall make himself available for interrogation for further investigation whenever required

· His passport shall remain deposited in court


The three-judge bench comprising of Justice R Banumathi, Justice AS Bopanna and Justice Hrishikesh Royset agreed with the HC order that economic offences came under the category of grave offences. However, it noted that denying bail was the exception to the law of basic jurisprudence. It said that the grant of bail continued to hold field to ensure that the accused had their chance at seeking a fair trial.

The senior Congress leader addressed his first press conference after being granted bail on Thursday, December 5, 2019. Expressing gratitude for his release, Chidambaram said that he would not comment on the case as it was sub-judice and instead turned to speak about matters related to the economy.

He said, “The government is wrong. It is wrong because it is clueless. It is unable to look for the obvious clues because it is stubborn and mulish in defending its catastrophic mistakes like demonetisation, flawed GST, tax terrorism, regulatory overkill, protectionism, and centralized control of decision-making in the PMO.”

Calling out PM Modi on his silence related to the economic slowdown he said, “The Prime Minister has been unusually silent on the economy. He has left it to his ministers to indulge in bluff and bluster. The net result, as The Economist put it, is that the government has turned out to be an ‘incompetent manager’ of the economy.”

Speaking about the Modi government, he said, “Government is calling the present slowdown ‘cyclical’. Thank god they have not called it ‘seasonal’. It is ‘structural’ and the government has no solutions or reforms that would address the structural problems.”

Citing that the UPA lifted 140 million people out of poverty between 2004 and 2014, he accused the NDA saying that it has, since 2016, “pushed millions of people below the poverty line.”

Addressing the people, he asked them to pay close attention to the numbers that pointed in the direction of a “floundering economy.”

He expressed his optimism about the economy coming out of the slump and that parties other than the BJP were better for the job, saying, “The economy can be brought out of the slowdown, but this government is incapable of doing that. I believe that the Congress and some other parties are better equipped to pull the economy out of the slowdown and push economic growth, but we have to wait for better times.”

He also attacked Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman in Parliament today for saying that her family didn’t eat onions – this especially at a time when consumers are struggling to buy the key food staple that is priced at Rs. 120 per kg.

"That shows the mindset of this government," he said and was later seen joining a protest by the Congress at Parliament against rising onion prices.

Speaking to the media about Kashmir he said, “As I stepped out and breathed the air of freedom at 8 pm last night, my first thought and prayers were for the 75 lakh people of the Kashmir Valley who have been denied their basic freedoms since August 4, 2019. I am particularly concerned about the political leaders who have been detained without charges. Freedom is indivisible: if we must preserve our freedom, we must fight for their freedom.”

One cannot forget the witch-hunt the CBI / Ed went on trying to arrest Chidambaram. The event was played on every TV screen in India. After the high-voltage drama that lasted for over an hour, Chidambaram was taken for a medical check-up and then to the CBI headquarters.

Congress leaders had then vehemently accused the BJP of misusing its power and arm-wresting national agencies to fulfil their agenda against the leaders of the Opposition Party.

It looks like the SC has overstepped the BJP and finally taken back charge of the investigation. Will it face any repercussions by the autocratic Centre or will it retain its autonomy in judicial matters?


Related:

Karnataka High Court quashes Enforcement Directorate’s order of freezing Greenpeace India’s bank accounts
What Happened to Tax Investigations on Ambanis?

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