Arvind Kejriwal said Vijay Nair reported to Atishi, not him: ED to Delhi court on excise policy case | Latest News India - Hindustan Times
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Arvind Kejriwal said Vijay Nair reported to Atishi, not him: ED to Delhi court on excise policy case

Apr 01, 2024 07:09 PM IST

Delhi excise policy case: ED said Arvind Kejriwal's conduct has been non-cooperative and he has tried to mislead the interrogation.

Additional solicitor general (ASG) SV Raju, appearing for the Enforcement Directorate, on Monday, April 1, told a Delhi court that chief minister Arvind Kejriwal, arrested in a money laundering case linked to the now-scrapped Delhi excise policy, was not cooperating with the investigation.

Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal with PWD minister Atishi. (Sanchit Khanna/Hindustan Times)
Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal with PWD minister Atishi. (Sanchit Khanna/Hindustan Times)

"Arvind Kejriwal's conduct has been totally non-cooperative and he has tried to mislead the interrogation. He said Vijay Nair does not report to me but to Atishi. Kejriwal is not sharing the password for his phone," SV Raju argued, reported by Bar and Bench.

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When special judge Kaveri Baweja asked how far were these arguments relevant to the application for judicial custody of Arvind Kejriwal, the ASG replied, “We reserve the right to seek his ED custody at a later stage.” Follow Live Updates on Arvind Kejriwal court hearing

Vijay Nair is the former communication-in-charge of the AAP and is among the accused in the Delhi excise policy case.

Aam Aadmi ministers Atishi, Saurabh Bhardwaj and Arvind Kejriwal's wife Sunita Kejriwal were present in the court during the hearing, news agency PTI reported.

Arvind Kejriwal's lawyers, meanwhile, moved an application to allow Kejriwal to read three books inside the jail - Bhagavad Gita, Ramayana and How Prime Ministers Decide. He also sought permission for a special diet and to have a religious locket.

The Rouse Avenue Court then sent Arvind Kejriwal to judicial custody till April 15 in the excise policy-linked money laundering case.

Arvind Kejriwal was produced in the court after his Enforcement Directorate custody came to an end on Monday.

Speaking to reporters before entering court, the AAP leader said, "Whatever the prime minister is doing(referring to his arrest) is not good for the country".

The ED had arrested Arvind Kejriwal on March 21 in connection with the case. The next day, Judge Baweja remanded him in the custody of the ED till March 28.

Following this, the court allowed the ED's plea requesting an extension of his custodial interrogation by four days till April 1.

“The interrogation is complete. Why has he (Kejriwal) been sent to jail? The people of the country will answer to this dictatorship.” Sunita Kejriwal told reporters.

BJP reacts to ED's Vijay Nair claim

Reacting to the development, Bharatiya Janata Party MP Sudhanshu Trivedi, at a press conference, said, "There are media reports that Arvind Kejriwal has mentioned that the prime accused Vijay Nair used to report to Atishi and Saurabh Bharadwaj... The Delhi government's situation over liquor policy is becoming clearer and clearer. It has to be seen if Kejriwal resigns or heads towards a new politics..."

On Arvind Kejriwal being sent to judicial custody, Trivedi said, "...Those who tried to portray the bogie of victimhood, I would like to underline that today's judgment of the court is based on concrete evidence for which neither we nor you or anybody else is privy. So, it is the jurisprudence which has decided to extend this judicial custody for 15 days.

“Now, it raises certain moral and constitutional questions...Anna Hazare used to be his (Arvind Kejriwal) 'Guru'...The guru had said that he wouldn't join politics, 'chela' joined politics and became the CM too. But there was another rally yesterday where he changed his ‘guru’. Now, the ‘guru’ is Lalu Prasad Yadav...Lalu Yadav at least resigned from his post when he was going to jail but he (Arvind Kejriwal) hasn't resigned yet.”

In its remand application, the probe agency has accused the AAP leader of "being involved in the entire conspiracy of Delhi liquor scam, in drafting and implementation of the policy, for favouring and benefiting the quid pro receiving kickbacks and eventually using part of proceeds of crime generated out of the scheduled offence in the election campaign for Goa Assembly elections".

(With inputs from agencies)

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