A Delhi court has directed Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwalto appear on February 17 and explain why he has skipped five summons from theEnforcement Directorate, which is investigating alleged money laundering linked to the liquor excise policy scam case.
The Aam Aadmi Party has said it is ‘studying the court order… and will take action as per law.’
The central probe agency last week filed a fresh complaint against Mr Kejriwal over his non-compliance. It said he, as a public servant, could not ignore the orders of a government agency.
The Aam Aadmi Party boss snubbed the Enforcement Directorate’s repeated summons, declaring the notices from the agency, accused of acting under orders from the BJP to target rivals before the Lok Sabha election, to be illegal.
Kejriwal did not respond to the first because he was campaigning for the Madhya Pradesh election, and ignored the others citing various prior commitments, including a 10-day meditation retreat.
The party has slammed the ED’s actions as ‘politically motivated’ and has complained that Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s ‘sole aim… is to arrest Arvind Kejriwal and topple the Delhi government’
Mr Kejriwal was earlier questioned by the CBI for nine hours in this case in April last year. He is not an accused so far.
‘CBI asked 56 questions (but) everything is fake. Am convinced they don’t have a single piece of evidence,’ he had said.
However, two senior AAP members, including ex-Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia and Rajya Sabha MP Sanjay Singh have been arrested.
The case refers to allegations the AAP government’s revamped alcohol sales policy allowed it to receive crores in kickbacks from cartels, and that this money was channelled into funding poll expenses in Goa and other states.
Specifically, both the ED and the CBI have alleged the policy allowed cartelization and favoured certain dealers, who paid bribes for liquor sale licenses.
The AAP has strongly refuted all charges. The Delhi government reported a 27 per cent increase in income from the policy and generated INR 8,900 crore in revenue.
The party has also accused the BJP of manipulating the agency to target it.
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