Delhi CM Kejriwal in ED Custody March till 28 Over Alleged Liquor Scam

Kejriwal in ED Custody

New Delhi: In a significant development, the Rouse Avenue Court in New Delhi has ordered Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal into the custody of the Enforcement Directorate (ED) until March 28, amidst allegations of money laundering connected to the contentious Delhi liquor scam. The court’s decision implies that the festival of Holi will see the Chief Minister confined within the walls of the ED’s remand room, marking a stark contrast to the usual celebrations.

Despite the ED’s request for a ten-day remand, the court sanctioned a six-day custody period. Representing Kejriwal, a trio of prominent lawyers—Abhishek Manu Singhvi, Vikram Chaudhary, and Ramesh Gupta—vigorously contested the ED’s custody plea.

The ED, in its courtroom appeal, claimed that substantial electronic evidence had been deliberately destroyed to obscure the money trail, including the destruction of numerous mobile phones. Following these allegations, Kejriwal was arrested under the suspicion of orchestrating the financial irregularities within the Delhi liquor scam, leading to a formal charge under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act.

Central to the ED’s argument is the accusation that the recently implemented liquor policy was crafted to specifically benefit the South Block, with Kejriwal allegedly at the helm of this conspiracy. The agency cited Kejriwal’s non-cooperation with the investigation, highlighted by his failure to respond to nine summons, as a key reason for necessitating his custody for a thorough interrogation.

The ED’s narrative suggests that the Delhi government’s liquor policy was amended to facilitate funding for the Goa elections, likening the government’s operations to those of a corporate entity. It is through this policy, the ED contends, that funds were channeled for electoral purposes.

Kejriwal in ED Custody

As Kejriwal was presented before the court, the ED reiterated its request for a ten-day remand, emphasizing the need for an exhaustive inquiry into the high-profile case. The Additional Solicitor General (ASG) Raju assured the court that all procedures under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) were adhered to during Kejriwal’s arrest, with written explanations provided to both the Chief Minister and his family.

The unfolding events paint a picture of a political drama with Kejriwal accused of colluding with the South Block, as the ED continues to unravel the threads of the alleged liquor policy scam.