Arvind Kejriwal is the ‘key conspirator’ of the excise policy scam, ED tells to SC

RNS: The Enforcement Directorate (ED) has informed the Supreme Court that Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal is the “key conspirator” in the excise policy scam. The agency stated that Kejriwal orchestrated the scam in collusion with his ministers and Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leaders.

ED also alleged that Kejriwal was involved in demanding bribes from liquor businessmen in exchange for benefits under the excise policy. In a 734-page counter affidavit, the ED stated, “National Capital Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal is the main conspirator of the Delhi Excise Policy scam. They carried out this with the connivance of government ministers, AAP leaders, and others.”

The agency further stated, “Arvind Kejriwal was involved in a conspiracy to frame the Excise Policy 2021-22 to benefit a select few and demanding bribes from liquor businessmen in return for the benefits given in the said policy.”

The ED argued that there are no separate provisions in the Prevention of Money Laundering Act, 2002 for different standards of evidence for arresting a chief minister or a common citizen. The agency refuted Kejriwal’s contention that his arrest violated the concept of free and fair elections, stating that the arrest of a person for a factual offence cannot violate this concept.

The ED justified Kejriwal’s arrest, stating that it was based on bona fide grounds and not on any malicious intent. The agency also alleged that Kejriwal was involved in using the proceeds of crime in AAP’s campaign during the Goa elections.

The Supreme Court had issued a notice to the ED on April 15 and sought its reply on Kejriwal’s petition challenging his arrest. The ED stated that Kejriwal’s plea “does not have merit” and deserves to be dismissed, as the facts leading to his arrest have been examined by various courts.

In response, AAP accused the ED of being a “lying machine” and alleged that it was spreading lies at the behest of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).

The case pertains to alleged corruption and money laundering in the formulation and implementation of the Excise Policy of the Delhi Government for 2021-22, which was later rescinded. Kejriwal was arrested in this case on March 21 and is currently in judicial custody in Tihar Jail.

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