Thursday 22 August 2019 2:51 AM UTC
NEW DELHI Aug 22: In surprise turn of events, former finance minister P Chidambaram, who is facing arrest in INSX Media case, made an unexpected appearance at AICC office in New Delhi and held a press confidence, pleading that he is not guilty.
“There is no reasonable evidence against me nor is there charge sheet against me. The FIR is not accusing me of any wrong doings,”
He said that he was not running away from law but wanted to ensure that justice prevails and he get the protection of law for he is eligible for.
“All we wanted is a hearing. No one is running away,” said the senior Congress leader, who hadn’t been seen since the Delhi High Court denied him protection from arrest on Tuesday.
The 73-year-old said he was not evading the law but pursuing it, and that he has faith in the law “even if it is applied by an unequal hand” by the investigative agencies.
I was aghast that I was accused of hiding from the law… I was working alongside my lawyers whole of last night… and the whole day,” Mr Chidambaram said, explaining his absence from the public eye.
“Respect for the law can mean only one thing — await (the Supreme Court’s) decision on Friday… Until Friday, let’s hope the lamp of liberty will shine bright,” he said in what was seen as a message to the investigative agencies that have been on his tail since yesterday’s high court judgment that denied him anticipatory bail.
Since last evening, the CBI visited his residence in Delhi twice and two lookout circulars – meant to stop a person from leaving the country — have been issued against him by the agency and the Enforcement Directorate.
This morning, the Supreme Court refused an urgent hearing on his request for anticipatory bail and said it would hear the petition on Friday.
In his petition before the top court, the former minister has argued that his antecedents are “impeccable” and there is no possibility of him “fleeing from justice”.
Requesting more time to appear before the CBI, he had sought interim relief, saying else, he would suffer “irreparable loss”.
Chidambaram is accused of facilitating foreign investment in the INX Media company in 2007, as Finance Minister in the Congress-led UPA government, at the instance of his son Karti Chidambaram, who allegedly received kickbacks for his role.
After a brief and quick press conference, Chidambaram disappeared from the scene. Meanwhile, the CBI team has arrived at the AICC office to arrest him.
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