The Central Bureau of Investigation has registered a case against five accused including Karti Chidambaram, son of senior Congress leader and former Union Home Minister P Chidambaram launched a massive search and seizure operation at different locations like Chennai, Mumbai, and Mansa (Punjab).
It has been alleged that the private company based at Mansa was in the process of establishing a 1980 MW thermal power plant at Mansa (Punjab) and establishing of plant was outsourced to a Chinese Company. It has been further alleged that the project was running behind its schedule. In order to avoid penal actions for the delay, the private company of Mansa was trying to bring more and more Chinese persons/professionals for their site at District Mansa (Punjab) and needed Project VISAs over & above the ceiling imposed by Ministry of Home Affairs. It has also been alleged that for the said purpose, the Representative of the said private company approached a person based at Chennai through his close associate/front man and thereafter they devised a back-door way to defeat the purpose of ceiling (maximum of Project VISAs permissible to the company’s plant) by granting permission to re-use 263 Project VISAs allotted to the said Chinese company’s officials.
It has been alleged that in pursuance of the same, the said representative of Mansa based private company submitted a letter to Ministry of Home Affairs seeking approval to re-use the Project VISAs allotted to this company, which was approved within a month and permission was issued to the company. A bribe of Rs. 50 Lakh was allegedly demanded by the accused person based at Chennai through his close associate or front man which was paid by the said Mansa based private company.
It has been further alleged that the payment of said bribe was routed from Mansa based private company to said private person of Chennai and his close associate/Front man through a Mumbai based company as payment of false invoice raised for Consultancy and out of pocket expenses for Chinese VISAs related works whereas the private company based at Mumbai was never in any kind of work relating to VISAs rather it was in an entirely different business of industrial knives.
Searches were being conducted on Tuesday 17 May 2022 at around 10 places including in Chennai, Mumbai, Koppal (Karnataka), Jharsuguda (Orissa), Mansa (Punjab) & Delhi.
Investigation is continuing.