There are always culprits who, after committing a crime believe that that power and money can save them. The primary of these assumptions is to get expensive and high profile legal representation. P Chidambaram, the Congress leader who is currently under arrest on charges of money laundering is one of them. Despite being a lawyer himself, he has enlisted a team of 12 advocates, the crème de la crème. However, as fate would have it, all of them have their hands tied up in front of the judicial system.
The CBI on Wednesday arrested former Union Minister and senior Congress leader P Chidambaram from his Jor Bagh residence following an hour long drama. P Chidambaram had been untraceable after the Delhi High Court had dismissed both his anticipatory bail pleas in connection with INX Media scam on Tuesday. Chidambaram’s legal team had also failed to get the issue listed in Supreme Court for an urgent hearing against the Delhi High Court’s order. Both, CBI and ED were on the lookout for the Congress leader.
Now, Chidambaram is currently arrested and being held under CBI’s custody. Though he has been granted an anticipatory bail with regards to the ED till Monday, the court has refused to grant him respite with regards to CBI and the Congress leader continues to be in its custody.
This brings to light the sheer gravity of his offences. Chidambaram, one of the most prominent lawyers of the country himself, along with his team of 12 lawyers couldn’t save his fate. Not just one of the most important Congress leaders, he also knows the legal fraternity and the workings of the Indian judicial system well and charges around Rs 6-7 lakh for one hearing in the Supreme Court and Rs 7 to Rs 15 lakh for appearing in the High Court. Yet, all the knowledge and experience seems to have gone futile.
He boasts with him a team of heavy weights, who are counted among the most expensive lawyers in the country. The most prominent of these is Kapil Sibal, who is currently representing the Sunni Waqf board in the Ayodhya dispute, has never shied away from appearing in the most controversial cases. He charges a fee of Rs 5 to 16 lakhs for a single appearance in the court. Moreover, being a senior Congress leader, he had personal gains in the case and yet Sibal failed to achieve anything substantial.
The other prominent name to feature is that of advocate Abhishek Manu Singhvi, who was representing Rahul Gandhi in his Rafale contempt of court proceedings. He is considered as one of the 5 most expensive lawyers in the country, charging a fee of Rs 6-15 lakh per hearing. He was India’s youngest Attorney General at the young age of 37.
The third heavy weight is veteran Congress leader Salman Khurshid, who is a well-known senior advocate, eminent writer and law teacher. Salman Khurshid charges Rs 5 lakhs for a single hearing in the Supreme Court, while for an appearance in the High court, his legal fees stands at Rs 8 to 11 lakh.
Apart from these, advocates Arshdeep Singh Khurana and Vivek Tankha were also representing Chidambaram. Arshdeep Singh Khurana is counted among the most expensive lawyers in Delhi, while Vivek Tankha is a senior Supreme Court lawyer and member of the Congress party.
If the fees of Salman Khurshid, Kapil Sibal and Abhishek Manu Singhvi are added, the total stands at Rs 25 lakhs for one hearing. Along with them, if the fees of the other 9 lawyers are considered at a minimum of Rs 1 lakh each, then the total legal fees will be 9 lakhs. This indicates that Chidambaram would have spent Rs 34 lakhs for a hearing but despite spending such amount, none of them could free Chidambaram from CBI’s custody.
A total of 20 hearings have been conducted in this case so far, which indicates that Chidambaram has spent an approximate amount of 7 crores until now. Yet, this huge amount of money and the most able lawyers in terms of intellect and experience could do nothing to help him. This is only indicative of his crimes. The team of advocates tried their best but in the end, the mounting evidence and allegations against Chidambaram were such that no judge could ignore it. It all point towards a prima facie case against Chidambaram and all the money, power and knowledge in the country could not help him.