ED issues seventh summons to Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal in liquor policy case

AAP leader had skipped previous summonses saying they were ‘politically motivated’

Arvind Kejriwal Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal | PTI

The Enforcement Directorate has issued a fresh summons to Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal in connection with the Delhi liquor policy case and he has been reportedly asked to appear before the agency on February 26. This is the seventh summons against the chief minister in the case.

The fresh summons has been issued after the central agency approached a Delhi Court earlier this month against Kejriwal, accusing him of skipping summonses citing “lame excuses”. Kejriwal was issued sixth summons on Monday, which too he skipped citing other commitments. The Aam Aadmi Party and Arvind Kejriwal had then demanded that the ED should wait for the court’s decision before issuing fresh summons.

The Delhi Chief Minister has been skipping summons alleging that they were “politically motivated” and he is being summoned to stop him from going for campaigns.

In its complaint, the Enforcement Directorate (ED) alleged that the Delhi chief minister intentionally did not want to obey the summonses and kept on giving "lame excuses". If a high-ranking public functionary like him disobeyed the law, it would "set a wrong example for the common man ie the "Aam Aadmi", the agency said.

The central agency, while issuing the seventh summons under the provisions of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA), has rejected his contention that a fresh notice for his attendance was wrong as the matter is sub-judice before a local court.

Kejriwal's name has been mentioned multiple times in chargesheets filed by the ED in the case. The agency has said that the accused were in touch with him regarding the preparation of the now-scrapped Delhi Excise Policy 2021-22. AAP leaders Manish Sisodia and Sanjay Singh apart from communications in-charge of the party Vijay Nair have been arrested in this case by the ED till now.

 The ED had claimed in its charge-sheet that the AAP used "proceeds of crime" to the tune of about Rs 45 crore in its Goa election campaign. The agency is also expected to file a fresh supplementary charge-sheet in the case and may name the AAP as a "beneficiary" of the alleged kickbacks that were generated through the excise policy.

 It is alleged that the Delhi government's excise policy for 2021-22 to grant licences to liquor traders allowed cartelisation and favoured certain dealers who had allegedly paid bribes for it, a charge repeatedly refuted by the AAP.

 The policy was subsequently scrapped and Delhi Lieutenant Governor V.K. Saxena recommended a CBI probe, following which the ED registered a case under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA). 

-with PTI inputs.

Join our WhatsApp Channel to get the latest news, exclusives and videos on WhatsApp