INX Media case: Court allows CBI to probe documents received from Switzerland

NEW DELHI: A Delhi court Monday allowed the CBI to investigate certain documents received from the Switzerland authorities in execution of Letter Rogatory (LR) in relation to INX Media corruption case allegedly involving former Union Minister P Chidambaram.

Special Judge M K Nagpal also permitted the agency to prepare a working copy of the data stored in the data carrier in encrypted form, so that it can be used for the day to day investigation of the case.

“However, the working copy of the data be prepared after taking all the requisite precautions and all the requisite formalities as per law to ensure that the evidentiary value of the said evidence/documents may not be destroyed or diminished,” the court said.

CBI told the court that during the course of investigation of the case, one LR to the competent authorities of Switzerland was issued by the court on July 13, 2018 on the request of CBI seeking mutual legal assistance in the matter of investigation in Switzerland.

It added that the “LR stands already executed by the concerned authorities of Switzerland” and it furnished the “evidence/documents collected by them during the course of execution of the said LR” that also included a sealed packet containing an encrypted electronic data carrier.

Letters Rogatory is a formal communication in writing sent by the Court in which action is pending to a foreign court requesting judicial assistance.

The most common remedies sought by letters rogatory are service of process and taking of evidence.

In August 2019, the CBI had arrested former finance minister P Chidambaram.

Subsequently, it had filed a Chargesheet against him and 13 others.

CBI had registered its case on May 15, 2017, alleging irregularities in a Foreign Investment Promotion Board clearance granted to INX Media group for receiving overseas funds of Rs 305 crore in 2007 during Chidambaram’s tenure as finance minister.