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Delhi Excise policy: ED arrests 2 pharma executives

Source: PTI   -  Edited By: Hemant Waje
Last updated on: November 10, 2022 17:53 IST
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Two private company executives were arrested on Thursday by the Enforcement Directorate in a case related to alleged irregularities in the now-scrapped Delhi excise policy in which Delhi deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia is an accused.

IMAGE: Central Bureau of Investigation officials during a raid at the residence of Delhi Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia in connection with alleged irregularities in Delhi Excise Policy, in New Delhi on August 19, 2022. Photograph: ANI Photo

The two arrested were Benoy Babu, general manager of liquor company Pernod Ricard, and P Sarath Chandra Reddy, whole time director and promoter of Aurobindo Pharma.

Initially, the Hyderabad-based Aurobindo Pharma Ltd, said in its filing to the BSE that it was "in the process of ascertaining further details and will do further disclosures as appropriate."

Later, in a separate filing, the company informed the BSE that the arrest of Reddy, is "not in any way connected with the operations of Aurobindo Pharma Limited or its subsidiaries".

The share prices of the company fell about 12 per cent in the BSE after news of the arrest came.

The two will be produced before a special PMLA court in Delhi on Thursday where the ED will seek their further custody.

The two were allegedly involved in the formulation of the Delhi excise policy along with government officials and also had a role in the "cartelisation" of the entire network, the sources said.

The ED had recovered a draft of the policy from one of the executives when it searched him earlier even as it found that investments worth Rs 200 crore in the retail liquor business were made by an entity in violation of policy directives, the sources alleged.


The ED has conducted multiple raids in this case so far.

Besides these two, the ED had arrested Sameer Mahandru, managing director of liquor manufacturing company Indospirit, in September.

The agency early this month raided the premises of a PA of Delhi Manish Sisodia and later questioned him at its office in Delhi.

The money laundering case stems from a Central Bureau of Investigation FIR that had named Sisodia as an accused among others. The CBI had raided the premises of the deputy chief minister and some Delhi government bureaucrats after filing the case.

The excise scheme came under the scanner after the Delhi LG recommended a CBI probe into the alleged irregularities in the implementation of the Delhi Excise Policy 2021-22. The LG had also suspended 11 excise officials.

The ED has questioned AAP MLA Durgesh Pathak and minister Satyendar Jain, currently in jail in an another money laundering case, in this case while the CBI has also questioned a number of people and arrested businessman Vijay Nair.

The CBI also arrested liquor businessman Abhishek Boinpally.

The CBI inquiry was recommended on the findings of the Delhi chief secretary's report filed in July showing prima facie violations of the GNCTD Act 1991, Transaction of Business Rules (ToBR)-1993, Delhi Excise Act-2009, and Delhi Excise Rules-2010, officials had said.

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Source: PTI  -  Edited By: Hemant Waje© Copyright 2023 PTI. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of PTI content, including by framing or similar means, is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent.