Delhi Excise Policy case: CM Arvind Kejriwal sent to judicial custody till April 15

A Delhi court on Monday remanded Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal to judicial custody till April 15 in the Delhi Excise Policy scam case.

Earlier on March 28, the Rouse Avenue court had extended till April 1, the custody of Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, who is currently under the custody of the Enforcement Directorate over his alleged involvement in the Delhi Excise Policy scam case.

The order was passed by Special CBI Judge Kaveri Baweja of the Rouse Avenue Court.

Kejriwal was produced in the court by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) after his six-day remand expired today.

Appearing for ED, Additional Solicitor General (ASG) SV Raju argued that Kejriwal was giving evasive replies in custodial interrogation.

He said details were sought regarding financial statements, but the national convenor of the Aam Admi Party (AAP) was yet to furnish the details. The ED has, therefore, asked the concerned departments to provide the same. He alleged that Kejriwal was not cooperating deliberately.

The court then directed that the statements recorded in the last seven days be produced before it.

During the proceedings, Kejriwal addressed the court himself, which was objected to by the ASG.

ASG Raju said the Delhi Chief Minister wanted to play to the gallery by making submissions himself. If he did not trust his lawyers, he should discharge them. There was a procedure in the court, which has to be followed. There cannot be a separate procedure just because he was a CM.

The ASG further contended that Rs 100 crore have been percolated through Hawala for GOA elections by South Group and there was a complete money chain.

He said just because the Chief Minister was making a statement saying he was innocent, did not make a difference.

Kejriwal argued that the real liquor policy scam began after his arrest by ED. He alleged that the ED only intended to arrest him, a sitting Chief Minister, as the case had been ongoing for two years, wherein CBI filed a case in August 2022, followed by the ECIR.

As per the Delhi Chief Minister, statements were being made until they (MSR/ Magunta Srinivasulu Reddy) were not giving statements against him. This implied that ED’s intention was just to frame him, he submitted.

ED submitted that the illicit funds generated through the manipulation of the Delhi Excise Policy 2020-21 were utilised to finance the Goa Elections.

The national agency further contended that Kejriwal acted as an intermediary between various parties, including former Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia and AAP officer Vijay Nair, facilitating alleged irregularities in the implementation of the liquor policy.

ED had arrested the Delhi Chief Minister from his residence on March 21, after questioning him for over two hours. He was arrested under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) for his alleged involvement in the Delhi liquor policy scam.

On March 22, Special CBI judge Kaveri Baweja of the Rouse Avenue Courts sent Kejriwal to ED custody till March 28.

Appearing for the national agency, Additional Solicitor General SV Raju alleged that Kejriwal was the kingpin of the Delhi excise scam and was directly involved in the use of proceeds of crime accounting to over Rs 100 crore.

The ASG contended that even during the time of search on March 21, Kejriwal did not give correct facts.

The agency sought 10-day custody of the accused on the grounds that it needed confrontation to recover the money trail.

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