In a major setback to senior Congress leader and former finance minister, the Supreme Court today refused to grant anticipatory bail to P Chidambaram in the INX Media money laundering case lodged by the Enforcement Directorate.
The top court dismissed Chidambaram’s plea challenging the Delhi High Court verdict denying him anticipatory bail in the case. The court said that anticipatory bail cannot be given as a matter of right of accused.
A bench of Justices R Banumathi and A S Bopanna said this is not a fit case to grant anticipatory bail saying grant of bail at this stage will hamper the investigation. The apex court further said the investigating agency has to be given sufficient freedom to conduct a probe into the case.
The court also rejected Chidambaram’s application for direction to the Enforcement Directorate, ED, to produce trans of his questioning conducted by the agency. However, the court said Chidambaram can approach the court concerned for grant of regular bail in the case.
Meanwhile, the Apex Court allowed P Chidambaram to withdraw his plea against non-bailable warrant and remand orders of the trial court in the INX Media corruption case lodged by the CBI.