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Kejriwal 'kingpin' of excise scam, 'kickback' used in polls: ED

Source: PTI   -  Edited By: Hemant Waje
Last updated on: March 22, 2024 21:39 IST
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Arvind Kejriwal 'used' the post of chief minister of Delhi to facilitate money laundering by the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP), which is a 'major beneficiary' of the proceeds of crimes generated in the alleged liquor scam case, the Enforcement Directorate (ED) claimed Friday.

IMAGE: The ED alleged Kejriwal was culpable in the case not only as an individual but was vicariously responsible for the actions of his associates. Photograph: Amit Sharma/ANI Photo

"Arvind Kejriwal, chief minister of NCT of Delhi is the kingpin and key conspirator of the Delhi Excise scam in collusion with ministers of Delhi government, AAP leaders and other persons," the federal agency informed a special Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) court while seeking his 10-day custody.

The court sent him to ED custody till March 28.


The ED claimed in its remand papers that 'Arvind Kejriwal was intrinsically involved in the conspiracy of formulation of the excise policy 2021-22 to favour certain persons and also involved in the demanding of kickbacks from liquor businessmen in exchange of favours granting in the said policy'.

The 55-year-old former Indian Revenue Service officer and activist was arrested by the ED on Thursday under the anti-money laundering law from his official residence in the Civil Lines area of Delhi.

The ED charged that Kejriwal 'was directly involved in the use of proceeds of crime generated in the Goa election campaign of the AAP (in 2022) to which he is the convenor and the ultimate decision maker'.

It informed the court it has recorded the statements of various people engaged in the election campaign-related activities of the AAP during the Goa polls and it was found that 'cash payments were made to them for work like survey workers, area managers, assembly managers etc'.

"These persons and activities related to the election campaign were overall managed by Vijay Nair (former AAP communications chief arrested in this case) and Durgesh Pathak, AAP MLA."

The agency claimed these charges were also corroborated by one of the candidates of AAP for Goa elections of 2022 who said he received funds for election expenses 'in cash' from the AAP volunteers in Goa.

The ED, for the first time in the about two year old probe, said the AAP was the 'major beneficiary of the proceeds of crime generated in the Delhi liquor scam'.

It alleged that a part of these proceeds of crime, to the tune of about Rs 45 crore in cash, was utilised in the election campaign of AAP in Goa assembly polls.

It claimed these funds were transferred to Goa via four 'Angadiya' routes.

The 'Angadiya' network is known to move huge cash funds from one location to the other.

'In this manner, AAP has committed the offence of money laundering through Sh Arvind Kejriwal and the offences thus are covered by section 70 of the PMLA,' it said.

It said that as the national convenor and member of the national executive, Kejriwal was 'ultimately responsible for the funds being used in the election expenses including their generation'.

The agency said it recorded the statement of AAP Rajya Sabha MP and national treasurer N D Gupta last year who told it that while Kejriwal was the overall incharge of the party, no sanction of the national executive or the political affairs committee is taken for deciding election expenses.

Kejriwal, it alleged, was 'not only the brain behind the AAP but also controlled its major activities'.

'Taking advantage of the fact that he was also the CM of Delhi, he used the said post to facilitate the offence of money laundering by the 'company' ie AAP and therefore, irrespective of his role and liability for the direct commission of the said offence, he is also vicariously liable for the offence committed by the AAP, being the national convenor of the said party and because of his role and active involvement in the day-to-day affairs and the conduct for the business of AAP,' the ED informed the court.

It said kickbacks were allegedly generated by the 'South Group' members, that includes arrested BRS leader K Kavitha and some others, and a part of these were 'used' in the Goa election campaign of the AAP.

The agency said Yuvajana Sramika Rythu Congress Party MP Magunta Srinivasulu Reddy recorded his statement with the ED last year who told it that he met Kejriwal with a desire to participate in the Delhi liquor business and the CM told him that Kavitha 'has already approached me (Kejriwal) to do liquor business in Delhi and offered to pay Rs 100 crore to the party i.e. the AAP...'

The agency said Kejriwal 'wilfully disobeyed' nine summonses issued to him to join this probe and when his statement was recorded under the PMLA on Thursday, he did not 'reveal the truth nor gave correct facts'.

It said the agency wants his custody to unearth the remaining proceeds of crime generated in the case and that he needs to be interrogated with other accused and witnesses 'involved in the kickbacks given by the South Group to the AAP and its leaders'.

Kejriwal was required 'to be interrogated to identify the complete modus operandi of the offence', the ED said in its prayer to the court.

The case pertains to alleged corruption and money laundering in formulating and executing the Delhi government's excise policy for 2021-22, which was later scrapped.

AAP leaders Manish Sisodia and Sanjay Singh were arrested by the ED earlier and they are in judicial custody currently.

Kejriwal's name has been mentioned multiple times in the charge sheets filed by the ED.

The agency has alleged that the accused were in touch with Kejriwal for formulating the excise policy that resulted in undue benefits to them in return for which they paid kickbacks to the AAP.

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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.
India Votes 2024

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