Published On: Tue, Apr 9th, 2024

Delhi HC dismisses Kejriwal’s plea against arrest, says “actively involved in using proceeds of crime”

New Delhi: The Delhi High Court on Tuesday dismissed Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal’s plea challenging his arrest by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) in a money laundering case linked with the alleged excise scam.

Kejriwal participated in activities linked to the scandal

Meanwhile, AAP said that it will move the Supreme Court on Wednesday challenging the high court verdict.

Following the high court order, AAP chief Arvind Kejriwal – whom the Enforcement Directorate has dubbed the ‘kingpin’ of the liquor policy case – will remain in Tihar Jail till April 15, as per Delhi Rouse Avenue court’s previous order.

While announcing its verdict earlier in the day, the high court observed that Arvind Kejriwal “conspired with others” and was “actively involved in using proceeds of crime”, as per the material shared by the Enforcement Directorate.

The high court also noted that Kejriwal was involved in a personal capacity in the formulation of the now-scrapped liquor policy and demanding kickbacks.

Additionally, as the national convenor of AAP, Kejriwal participated in activities linked to the scandal, the court noted.

“ED was able to place enough material in the shape of ‘Hawala’ material, and statements of approvers that he was given money in cash for Goa elections. Money was sent in cash for the Goa elections. The arrest is not in contravention of law, remand cannot be termed illegal,” Justice Swarana Kanta Sharma said while delivering the verdict.

The court also ruled that Kejriwal’s challenge to the timing of the arrest before the Lok Sabha elections in the absence of any mala fide on the part of the federal probe agency is “not sustainable”.

It also pointed out that the Delhi Chief Minister has been arrested in a money laundering case and the court has to examine his arrest and remand as per the law, irrespective of the timing of the elections.

“The contention that Kejriwal could have been questioned through VC is to be rejected. It is not for the accused to decide how the investigation is to be done. It cannot be as per the convenience of the Accused. This court won’t set two sets of laws- One for the commons and the other for the public servants. There cannot be any specific privilege for any one including the Chief Minister,” the high court said further.

Reacting to the high court verdict, AAP leader and Delhi minister Saurabh Bhardwaj said that though his party respects Delhi High Cour, it does not agree with its decision on Arvind Kejriwal and will move Supreme Court.

“We have full faith in Supreme Court. We believe it will give relief to CM Kejriwal like it gave relief to Sanjay Singh,” Bhardwaj said.

The Delhi Chief Minister was arrested by the Enforcement Directorate on March 21, hours after the high court refused to grant him protection from coercive action by the ED.

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