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Business News/ News / India/  ED summons Arvind Kejriwal for fifth time in excise policy case; AAP says legal team to take decision | 5 things to know
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ED summons Arvind Kejriwal for fifth time in excise policy case; AAP says legal team to take decision | 5 things to know

Senior AAP leaders like Manish Sisodia, Sanjay Singh, and Satyendar Jain are already in prison in the Delhi excise policy case

Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal addresses a press conference on the Delhi government's new Solar Policy 2024 (ANI)Premium
Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal addresses a press conference on the Delhi government's new Solar Policy 2024 (ANI)

The Enforcement Directorate (ED) on Wednesday summoned Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal for the fifth time in the Delhi excise policy case. The national convenor of the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) has been asked to appear before the federal agency on February 2. The development comes as the ED is mulling over making the AAP a party in the Delhi excise policy case.

Arvind Kejriwal missed all earlier appearances before the federal agency, which also triggered his arrest speculations. The Delhi chief minister has claimed that it is a conspiracy of BJP-led central government to arrest him before the Lok Sabha elections in 2024.

Fresh summons to Arvind Kejriwal in Delhi excise policy case: 5 points

1. The ED first summoned Arvind Kejriwal on November 2, then the second time on December 22, and the last two summons came on January 3 and 18.

2. After receiving the fresh summons, the legal team of the AAP said that they are studying the notice issued by the federal agency and will take a decision in accordance with the law. "We have received news about the fifth summons. Our legal team is studying it and we will decide what to do as per law. The earlier summonses were illegal and we had sought a reply from the Enforcement Directorate," AAP chief national spokesperson Priyanka Kakkar said. 

3. The date of the summon is significant as the AAP workers have decided to protest outside the BJP headquarters in New Delhi on February 2 against the results of Chandigarh mayoral polls. The AAP claimed that BJP had won the mayoral elections by “cheating" as the presiding officer declared 8 votes of the Congress-AAP alliance invalid.

4. Senior AAP leaders like Manish Sisodia, Sanjay Singh, and Satyendar Jain are already in prison in the Delhi excise policy case. On December 2, 2023, the Enforcement Directorate (ED) accused AAP Rajya Sabha MP Sanjay Singh and his associate Sarvesh Mishra in its sixth charge sheet, asserting that the party utilised kickbacks amounting to 45 crore, acquired through the policy, to finance its electoral endeavours in the Goa assembly elections of 2022.

5. Although the ED had previously asserted that funds from the excise policy were employed to support the election campaign, this marks the initial instance where the agency has explicitly disclosed the alleged kickback sum and identified the AAP as a direct beneficiary. These revelations are anticipated to be incorporated in the ED's forthcoming charge sheet against the party.

Bribes worth more than 100 crore

The federal agency has claimed that the AAP leaders received bribes worth more than 100 crore in connection with the excise policy, which sought to rejuvenate the declining liquor industry in the city by shifting from a system dependent on sales volume to one based on a licensing fee for traders.

The AAP has claimed that the ED doesn't have any concrete evidence in the case apart from the testimony of accused-turned-government approvers. But, at various stages, the courts have denied bail to the senior AAP leaders.

Recently, the Supreme Court rejected the review petition of Manish Sisodia against the apex court order denying him bail. "We have carefully perused review petitions as also the grounds in support thereof. In our opinion, no case for review of the judgment dated 30.10.2023 is made out," the Supreme Court said in its order.

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Published: 31 Jan 2024, 02:48 PM IST
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