INX media case: SC extends protection to Karti till Apr 2
New Delhi: The Supreme Court on Monday extended the interim protection against arrest to Karti Chidambaram, granted by the Delhi High Court in the INX Media money laundering case, till April 2.
The order came as the Enforcement Directorate sought an authoritative pronouncement from the top court in view of several conflicting orders of different high courts on the probe agency's power of arrest under section 19 of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA).
A bench of Chief Justice Dipak Misra and Justices A M Khanwilkar and DY Chandrachud was told by Additional Solicitor General Tushar Mehta that the ED has been armed with the power of arrest under the statute, keeping in mind the several international conventions underlining the need to curb money laundering generated from drugs smuggling, terror financing and blackmoney routing.
Mehta referred to the 1988 UN convention and said the member countries felt the need to have a law to deal with the offence money laundering.
The advent of e-commerce has made investigation into money laundering more
difficult as ill-gotten wealth have been transferred to all corners of the world very conveniently after the globalisation, he said.
The bench said the interim order of March 15 granting protection of arrest to Karti, son of former Union Minister P Chidambaram, till today, is extended till April 2. The hearing, which remained inconclusive, would also continue on April 2.
On March 15, the apex court had given the interim relief to Karti in the INX media money laundering case and said it would clear the "confusion" which has crept in due to the divergent views of different high courts on ED's power to arrest.