Congress leader Kapil Sibal on Thursday condemned the arrest of former union minister P Chidambaram while expressing his ‘concerns over not being provided with an opportunity to be heard’ on the issue.
“It is a matter of great concern to us as members of the legal fraternity, also it should be a matter of concern as citizens. A citizen has all the right to appeal, it’s his legal right. All we wanted was a hearing, the presiding judge chose instead to say that I am sending the file to CJI. Isn’t a citizen entitled to be heard?” Sibbal said.
Chidambaram was arrested in the INX Media case last night after over an hour-long drama during which some CBI officials had to scale the gates of former Minister’s residence.
“We were told that the matter will be handled by the CJI. However, as per Supreme Court’s handbook of the procedure, if the CJI is busy with the constitution bench, we can approach the next most senior judge who can hear the petition. This is what happened a day before yesterday when we visited the Supreme Court, CJI told us to mention this matter to the next senior judge,” he added.
Sibal also expressed his discontent over Chidambaram’s arrest and termed it “drama” and “political persecution”.
“He has been arrested before the hearing, what was the motive of filing a petition then? We just wanted the hearing to take place and I am deeply saddened by whatever has happened in these few days,” Sibal added.
Chidambaram was arrested after he failed to get relief from the Supreme Court on Wednesday.
After his arrest by the CBI from his Jor Bagh residence, Chidambaram was taken to headquarters of the probe agency. He will be produced before a CBI court at the Rouse Avenue today.
On Wednesday the former Finance Minister had made a dramatic appearance at the Congress headquarters in Delhi and had rejected the charges against him and his son Karti in the INX Media case.