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"My life is dedicated to nation": Delhi CM Kejriwal after ED names him 'liquor scam kingpin'

New Delhi: On Friday the Rouse Avenue Court in Delhi sent Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal to ED custody till March 28. The probe agency had asked for 10 days remand after arresting Delhi CM in the alleged Delhi excise policy case.

CM Kejriwal who was produced before the court on Friday continued to maintain his stand. While entering the court complex for the remand hearing, Kejriwal told reporters, "My life is dedicated to the country whether I am inside or outside the prison."

Quoting Kejriwal the Aam Admi Party (AAP) in a post on X further added, "Lions do not get scared by coward dictators."

In its arguments before the court, the ED alleged that the CM of Delhi is the key conspirator and kingpin in demanding kickbacks from businessmen. The agency further claimed that Kejriwal was directly involved in the formation of the Excise policy.

The ED counsel claimed that Vijay Nair, who was the media in charge of AAP, was working for Delhi CM Kejriwal. Nair, who the agency said lives adjacent to the residence of Kejriwal, acted as a middleman between the AAP and the South group.

The ED counsel further claimed that the proceeds of crime are not only Rs 100 crore but profits made by bribe givers were also proceeds of crime. The counsel said that the agency had traced Hawala trails of Rs 45 crore that the agency says was used in the Goa Election.

Senior Advocate Abhishek Manu Singhvi appearing for Kejriwal opposed the remand plea and submitted that the agency needs to show the necessity to arrest. Singhvi argued that the power of arrest and the necessity of arrest are two different things.

Singhvi said that in the history of 75 years of independence, this is the first time a sitting CM is arrested.

Kejriwal was arrested by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) in the excise policy case on Thursday after the Delhi High Court refused interim protection to Kejriwal from coercive action in connection with the excise policy case.

The case pertains to alleged irregularities and money laundering in framing and implementing the Delhi excise policy case 2022, which was later scrapped.

Kejriwal's arrest came days after the ED arrested Bharat Rashta Samithi (BRS) leader and daughter of former Telangana chief minister K Chandrasekhar Rao K Kavitha, in connection with its investigation into money laundering charges linked to the now-scrapped excise policy. Kavitha is in ED custody till March 23.

Two senior AAP leaders, Manish Sisodia and Sanjay Singh, are in judicial custody in the excise policy case. Sisodia, who was the then Delhi Deputy Chief Minister, was arrested by the CBI on February 26 following several rounds of questioning. On October 5, ED arrested Sanjay Singh, who is a Rajya Sabha member.

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