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Delhi excise case: Court extends Manish Sisodia's judicial custody till May 12, tells CBI to supply chargesheet copy

New Delhi: The Rouse Avenue Court on Thursday extended till May 12 the judicial custody of Delhi's former Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia in the CBI case related to alleged irregularities in the now-scrapped excise policy.
Special Judge MK Nagpal, while extending the judicial custody, also directed CBI to supply an e-copy of the supplementary chargesheet filed by it on April 25. Advocate Rishikesh, who appeared for Manish Sisodia, argued that on grounds of an "incomplete chargesheet/ incomplete investigation" his client has a right to "statutory/default bail" as per Supreme Court directions.
"Prima facie it seems the agency is saying that further investigation is required/pending. Therefore, we reserve the right to file an application for statutory bail," he said.
The Delhi court asked CBI why they have not mentioned that investigation related to Sisodia has been completed.
"You say you have filed a supplementary chargesheet (in the stipulated time), but you have said the investigation is pending in the case. Why have you not mentioned that the chargesheet is filed on completion of the investigation against Sisodia?"
The court said Sisodia's counsel's submission that a copy of the chargesheet is required by them to see whether the investigation qua Sisodia is complete has been noted.

It said though this is not the stage to supply a copy of the chargesheet, an e-copy of the same should be given.
The court noted that the bail hearing in the CBI case is going on in Delhi High Court and "aspects from this" could be used in order to press for bail before High Court.
The court added that Sisodia's right to argue default bail is reserved. He can argue the same before Delhi High Court. Sisodia's counsel sought a copy of the chargesheet in order to argue default bail in the High Court.
Sisodia was produced physically before the Court on Monday from Tihar Jail after the end of his Judicial custody period.
The Special Judge had last month denied bail to Sisodia, noting that the allegations made against him were serious in nature and at this stage of the case, he does not deserve to be released on bail as he has been arrested in this case on February 26.
The court said the investigation qua his role has still not been completed and the roles of the co-accused involved in the case are also being investigated.
It said Sisodia does not satisfy the triple test keeping in view his conduct "as reflected from destruction or non-production of his previous mobile phones of the relevant period and also the apparent role played by him in not producing or missing of the file of one Cabinet Note put up through the then Excise Commissioner Rahul Singh".
It said there may be serious apprehensions of destruction or tampering of some further evidence and even of influencing some prime witnesses by him or at his instance, in case he is released on bail by the court.
According to the CBI, Sisodia had played the most important and vital role in the criminal conspiracy and he had been deeply involved in the formulation as well as the implementation of the policy to ensure the achievement of its objectives.
The court said that payment of "advance kickbacks of around Rs. 90-100 crore" was meant for him and his other colleagues in the GNCTD and Rs. 20-30 crore out of the above are found to have been routed through the co-accused Vijay Nair, Abhishek Boinpally and approver Dinesh Arora.

It noted that certain provisions of the excise policy were permitted to be tweaked and manipulated by the applicant to protect and preserve the interests of South liquor lobby and to ensure repayment of the kickbacks to the said lobby.
The court said that evidence collected so far clearly shows that the applicant through the co-accused Vijay Nair was in contact with the South lobby and formulation of a favourable policy for them was being ensured at every cost and a cartel was permitted to be formed to achieve a monopoly in the sale of certain liquor brands of favoured manufacturers and it was permitted to be done against very objectives of the policy.
Thus, as per allegations made by the prosecution and the evidence collected in support thereof so far, the applicant can prima facie be held to be the architect of the said criminal conspiracy, noted the Court
Sisodia, in his bail petition in the trial court, had stated that no fruitful purpose would be served to keep him in custody as all the recoveries in the case have already been made.
Sisodia also stated that he joined the investigation as and when called for by the CBI. The other accused persons arrested in this case have already been granted bail, Sisodia noted further, adding that he held the important constitutional post of deputy CM of Delhi and has deep roots in the society.
Earlier, the Rouse Avenue Court, while sending Sisodia to CBI remand, directed that the interrogation of the accused during the remand period shall be conducted at some place having CCTV coverage, in accordance with guidelines laid down by the Supreme Court and the said footage shall be preserved by the CBI.
Sisodia was arrested by CBI and ED in the investigation of a case related to alleged irregularities in the framing and implementation of the excise policy of the Government of the National Capital Territory of Delhi. (ANI)

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