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ED raids Kejriwal's PS, AAP MP; attempt to scare, says Atishi

Source: PTI   -  Edited By: Hemant Waje
Last updated on: February 06, 2024 17:50 IST
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The Enforcement Directorate on Tuesday searched some premises of Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal's personal assistant Bibhav Kumar and others as part of its probe into charges that the Aam Aadmi Party received kickbacks of Rs 17 crore through "irregularities" in a Delhi Jal Board tender, official sources said.

This action is part of a money laundering investigation focusing on alleged bribes that were garnered through irregularities in the DJB tendering process and purportedly channelled as election funds to the Aam Aadmi Party, the officials said.

A dozen premises in the national capital were searched by the federal agency's officials from 7 am under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act.

The residences of Bibhav Kumar, former Delhi Jal Board member Shalabh Kumar, the office of party Rajya Sabha MP and national treasurer ND Gupta, and the premises of chartered accountant Pankaj Mangal and others associated with the ruling party in Delhi were covered in the search action.


In response to the raids, Delhi minister Atishi accused the authorities of attempting to "intimidate" the AAP.

These searches are related to an investigation concerning alleged irregularities in the tendering process of the Delhi Jal Board, for which the ED had previously arrested retired Jal Board chief engineer Jagdish Kumar Arora and contractor Anil Kumar Aggarwal on January 31.

Following the ED's assertion that further custodial interrogation was necessary to uncover a "larger conspiracy," a special PMLA court had extended their remand by five days on Monday.

The money laundering case originated from a CBI FIR that alleged corruption and bribery in the Delhi Jal Board of the Delhi government.

The FIR alleged that Arora awarded contracts to NKG Infrastructure Ltd. for a total cost of Rs 38 crore, despite the company's failure to meet the technical eligibility criteria.

ED officials claimed that NKG Infrastructure Ltd. secured the bid by submitting forged documents.

The probe further indicated that the contract was inflated, allowing kickbacks to be collected back from the contractors.

Arora is alleged to have been "aware" of the fact that the company does not meet the technical eligibility, the officials said, claiming that he received "bribe" amounts both in cash and bank accounts and passed these alleged kickbacks to Bibhav Kumar, Shalab Kumar, Pankaj Mangal and others.

The kickbacks, according to the officials, were also passed on as election funds to the AAP.

An analysis by the ED claimed that out of the contract value of Rs 38 crore, only about Rs 17 crore was spent on the tender work, with the remaining funds allegedly siphoned off under the guise of various false expenses, including bribes and election funds.

The raids came on a day Atishi claimed in a press conference that the ED had "deleted" audio recordings of witness statements in certain cases, including the excise policy probe involving AAP functionaries, a charge denied by the federal agency.

The ED officials said the agency was proposing to take legal action against the Delhi minister and that no footage was deleted.

It said audio recording of interrogation began only in October 2023.

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Source: PTI  -  Edited By: Hemant Waje© Copyright 2024 PTI. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of PTI content, including by framing or similar means, is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent.
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