The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) has summoned Delhi Chief Minister and Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) national convenor Arvind Kejriwal for questioning in connection with the excise policy case. Kejriwal has been asked to appear before the agency headquarters on April 16 at 11 AM.
This development comes weeks after the arrest of former Delhi Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia by the CBI in connection with the same case. The excise policy for 2021-22, which granted licenses to liquor traders, has been alleged to have favored certain dealers who paid bribes for it. The AAP has strongly denied these allegations, and the policy was later scrapped.
The CBI has alleged that irregularities were committed, including modifications in the excise policy, extension of undue favors to licensees, waiver/reduction in license fee, and extension of L-1 license without approval. The CBI spokesperson also stated that illegal gains from these acts were diverted to public servants by private parties through false entries in their books of accounts.
In February, Kejriwal had denied any wrongdoing in the excise policy, claiming that there was no "liquor scam" in Delhi and that the case was a result of "political vendetta and conspiracy". However, the Delhi BJP chief, Virendra Sachdeva, questioned the AAP's decision to scrap the policy if there was no scam in it. The Excise Policy 2021-22 was withdrawn by the AAP government last year after a CBI probe was recommended by Delhi Lieutenant Governor (LG) VK Saxena into "violation of norms and lapses".
Copyright©2023 Living Media India Limited. For reprint rights: Syndications Today