Excise Policy case: Delhi court sends Arvind Kejriwal to judicial custody till April 15

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New Delhi: A special court in the national capital on Monday (April 1) sent Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) party national convenor and Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal to judicial custody till April 15 in a money laundering case in connection with alleged irregularities in the formulation and implementation of the now-scrapped Delhi Excise Policy.

Kejriwal was produced before Special Judge Kaveri Baweja after the expiry of the Enforcement Directorate (ED) remand in the money laundering case.

ED didn’t seek Arvind Kejriwal’s custody

The ED did not seek the custody of Kejriwal and urged the court to send him to judicial custody. The ED told the court that the conduct of Kejriwal has been totally non-cooperative and he has tried to mislead the interrogation. It said that the Delhi Chief Minister is not sharing the password for his phone. “We reserve the right to seek his ED custody at a later stage,” the ED submitted before the court.

Kejriwal’s counsel moved an application before the court to allow him to read three books – Bhagvad Geeta, Ramayan and How Prime Ministers Decide by journalist Neerja Chaudhary – and take medicines to the jail.

Kejriwal was arrested by ED in money laundering case on March 21

Kejriwal was arrested in the money laundering case on March 21 and first he was sent to ED custody till March 28 and the ED custody was further extended by the court till April 1.

Kejriwal, who was allowed by the court to speak, questioned his arrest in the case during the last hearing, saying that can a sitting chief minister be arrested on the basis of four statements and had said that a “smokescreen” of the AAP being a corrupt political party has been created before the nation.

What are the allegations?

The ED has accused the Delhi Chief Minister of being the kingpin of the excise policy scam. It has further alleged the AAP party of “committing the offence of money laundering through Arvind Kejriwal”, who is the national convenor of the party and chief minister of Delhi. The ED claimed that the AAP can be categorised as a “company” as contemplated under section 70 of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA).

AAP leaders Manish Sisodia and Sanjay Singh and Bharat Rashtra Samithi (BRS) MLC K Kavitha, the daughter of former Telangana chief minister K Chandrashekar Rao are also among the 16 prominent persons arrested by the ED in the money laundering case connected with the alleged irregularities in the formulation and implementation of the now-scrapped Delhi Excise Policy. They all are currently lodged in Tihar Jail.

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