ED questions CM Arvind Kejriwal’s PA Bibhav Kumar in Delhi excise policy scam
On Thursday the Enforcement Directorate (ED) questioned Delhi Chief Minister and Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) supremo Arvind Kejriwal‘s PA Bibhav Kumar in connection with the money laundering case linked to alleged irregularities in Delhi excise policy 2021-22.
According to the ED, at least 36 accused individuals, including Delhi Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia and Kumar, “destroyed or used” 170 phones to conceal evidence of “kickbacks” worth thousands of crores of rupees in the alleged scam.
“Vijay Nair told Sameer Mahendru that the 2021-22 excise policy was the brainchild of Arvind Kejriwal. Mahendru wanted to verify this fact. And to verify the credibility, clout, and influence of Nair, Mahendru wanted to meet Kejriwal. Kejriwal’s PA fixed meetings between Mahendru and Kejriwal twice at the instance of Nair. But Mahendru couldn’t somehow meet Kejriwal, so Nair made Mahendru speak to Kejriwal on FaceTime (a calling app),” the ED alleged in its charge sheet.
In a charge sheet submitted to the court, the ED has alleged that a portion of the alleged Rs.100 crore “kickbacks” generated in the scrapped Delhi excise policy were “used” in the 2022 Goa Assembly election campaign of the Arvind Kejriwal-led party.
Sameer Mahendru is a Delhi-based liquor businessman who’s the Managing Director of the wine company Inospirit Group. Both Nair and Mahendru have been arrested in connection with the case.
A source said that it was Bibhav Kumar’s cellphone that Mahendru used to make the call to Kejriwal.
The ED had on February 11 arrested YSR Congress MP Magunta Srinivas Reddy’s son Raghav Magunta in the matter. Before Magunta, the ED had arrested Punjab-based businessman Gautam Malhotra and Rajesh Joshi, an aide of AAP’s social media in-charge Vijay Nair.
On February 20, Delhi’s Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia said that the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) had sent him a notice to appear before the probe agency on February 26 in connection with the excise policy case.
[With Inputs from IANS]
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