Lookout Notice For P Chidambaram: Just hours after the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) team arrived for the third time at former minister P Chidambaram’s residence at New Delhi’s Jor Bagh on Wednesday morning, the Enforcement Directorate (ED), after a failed visit Tuesday evening, issued a lookout circular against the senior Congress leader, on Wednesday.

Former union minister P Chidambaram, with investigating agencies on his trail, failed to win a reprieve this morning after he asked the Supreme Court for an urgent hearing on his petition for an anticipatory bail in the INX Media case. ED has issued a fresh lookout circular against former finance minister P Chidambaram in connection with the INX Media money laundering case.

Lookout Notice For P Chidambaram: Key Points

  • ED’s move came in the wake of Chidambaram’s counsel Kapil Sibal urging the Supreme Court to hear the matter
  • Chidambaram’s plea for anticipatory bail was rejected by the Delhi High Court on Tuesday

“It is a monumental magnitude of money laundering case,” the CBI told the top court, which forwarded the senior Congress leader’s petition for an urgent hearing to Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi. As the top judge proceeded with the Ayodhya temple-mosque case – now heard daily – uncertainty grew for Mr. Chidambaram.

In his petition before the Supreme Court, Mr. Chidambaram had argued that his antecedents were “impeccable” and there was no possibility of him “fleeing from justice”. Requesting more time to appear before the CBI, Mr. Chidambaram asked for interim relief “or else he would suffer irreparable loss”.

A lookout notice means Mr. Chidambaram will not be allowed to leave the country.

The ED’s move came in the wake of Chidambaram’s counsel Kapil Sibal urging the Supreme Court to hear the matter pertaining to the dismissal of Chidambaram’s anticipatory bail plea by the Delhi high court on Tuesday. 

The Apex court bench headed by Justice N V Ramana and comprising of Justices Mohan M Shantanagoudar and Ajay Rastogi refused to pass any order on the plea by senior Counsel Kapil Sibal representing Chidambaram to grant him ‘interim protection” till the matter was listed for consideration.

Sibal contended before the court that the order by Delhi high court rejecting the anticipatory bail was passed at 3.20 pm on Tuesday. The petitioner immediately approached the Supreme Court, which told him to mention the matter on Wednesday.

Mr. Chidambaram has been away from his home during visits by the CBI and the Enforcement Directorate. Past midnight on Tuesday, the CBI pasted a notice outside the house asking the former Finance Minister to appear before it within two hours of receiving the note.

The officials said this is a preventive measure exercised by the agency as Chidambaram’s whereabouts are not known at present and he is required by them to take the probe forward in the INX Media case, being investigated under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA).