ANI Photo | “He found a middle ground…” AAP leader Saurabh Bharadwaj on CM Kejriwal to appear before ED virtually

After the Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal agreed to appear virtually before the ED on any date after March 12, Delhi Minister Saurabh Bharadwaj stated that ED summons is ‘illegal’, but Arvind Kejriwal found a middle ground and decided to appear for questioning virtually so that the CM Arvind Kejriwal could not be arrested illegally.
“While ED summons is absolutely illegal, the CM felt that BJP leaders and spokespersons are time and again accusing him of not answering the ED questions. We were always of the opinion that it is not about answering the questions, it’s about the ED’s intent of illegally arresting Arvind Kejriwal. So Arvind Kejriwal found a middle ground and decided to appear for questioning via video conferencing… But if there is some conspiracy and they want to arrest the CM at any cost, then the ED will force him to come…” said Delhi Minister Saurabh Bharadwaj.
Meanwhile, Aam Aadmi Party leader Arvind Kejriwal has written a reply to the Directorate of Enforcement stating the ED’s summon as “illegal”, however, he has agreed to appear before the agency virtually on any date after March 12.
“The ED summons is illegal but still he is ready to answer. Arvind Kejriwal has asked for a date after March 12 from ED. After that, Arvind Kejriwal will attend the hearing via video conferencing.” Delhi Minister Saurabh Bharadwaj said.
Earlier on February 27, The Directorate of Enforcement (ED) issued an eighth summons to Delhi Chief Minister and Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) supremo Arvind Kejriwal in a money laundering probe related to irregularities in the Delhi Excise Policy 2021-22 case, asking him to join the investigation on March 4.
The fresh summons to the Delhi Chief Minister followed the seventh summons which he had skipped on February 26.
Kejriwal has so far skipped seven previous summons issued by the ED on February 26, February 19, February 2, January 18, January 3, November 2 and December 22, calling them “illegal and politically motivated”.
The ED wants to record Kejriwal’s statement in the case on issues like the formulation of policy, meetings held before it was finalised, and allegations of bribery.
The case is based on a First Information Report (FIR) alleging multiple irregularities in the formation and implementation of the Delhi excise policy (2021-22) by the Central Bureau of Investigation. The policy was withdrawn after allegations of corruption.
In its sixth charge sheet filed in the case on December 2, 2023, naming AAP leader Sanjay Singh and his aide Sarvesh Mishra, the ED has claimed that the AAP used kickbacks worth Rs 45 crore generated via the policy for part of its assembly elections campaign in Goa in 2022.
The excise policy was aimed to revitalise the city’s flagging liquor business and replace a sales-volume-based regime with a license fee for traders. It promised swankier stores and a better buying experience. The policy introduced discounts and offers on the purchase of liquor for the first time in Delhi.
Lieutenant Governor Vinai Kumar Saxena’s move to order a probe into alleged irregularities in the regime prompted the scrapping of the policy. The AAP has accused Saxena’s predecessor, Anil Baijal, of sabotaging the move with a few last-minute changes that resulted in lower-than-expected revenues.
Two senior AAP leaders — Manish Sisodia and Sanjay Singh — are already under judicial custody in the case. Sisodia, who was the then Delhi Deputy Chief Minister, was arrested by the CBI on February 26 following several rounds of questioning and on October 5, the ED arrested Singh, who is a Rajya Sabha member

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