ED takes cognisance of directions issued by Kejriwal to Delhi govt from custody

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Delhi Education Minister Atishi along with Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) supporters, take out a candlelight march against the arrest of Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal in the alleged Delhi Excise Policy scam, at Govindpuri area, in New Delhi on Sunday.

Delhi Education Minister Atishi along with Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) supporters, take out a candlelight march against the arrest of Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal in the alleged Delhi Excise Policy scam, at Govindpuri area, in New Delhi on Sunday.
| Photo Credit: ANI

The Enforcement Directorate has taken cognisance of Delhi Minister Atishi’s statement that Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal sent her directions from the agency’s custody to initiate public welfare works related to water and sewerage, official sources said on Sunday.

The federal agency will conduct an investigation to ascertain if these directions from the arrested Chief Minister were in line with the special Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) court’s order issued to the ED and Mr. Kejriwal during his custody period, the sources said.

While remanding Mr. Kejriwal in ED custody till March 28, the court had allowed his wife Sunita Kejriwal and personal assistant Bibhav Kumar to meet him every day for half hour between 6 and 7 p.m., apart from his lawyers for another half hour.

Earlier on Sunday, Water Minister Atishi said at a press conference that Mr. Kejriwal sent her a document from ED custody on Saturday with “his directions” to resolve public issues related to water and sewerage.

She said the Chief Minister directed that a sufficient number of water tankers be deployed in areas facing a water shortage to strengthen supply ahead of the summer months.

Mr. Kejriwal also directed her to issue instructions to the Chief Secretary and other officers in this regard, she added.

Mr. Kejriwal, 55, was arrested by the ED on March 21 following raids at his official residence in connection with the Delhi excise policy-linked money laundering case.

The ED, the sources said, will investigate if due processes were followed during these meetings. If any aberrations are found, the designated special court will be duly informed, they said.

The meeting area where the arrestee meets his lawyers and family members at the ED headquarters on A P J Abdul Kalam Road in central Delhi is monitored via a CCTV video link, according to the sources.

Mr. Kejriwal, who is also the national convener of the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP), is understood to have been questioned over the last few days about the formulation of the now-scrapped Delhi excise policy 2021-22, his meetings with various government officials and private stakeholders and the statements made by other accused and witnesses in the case till now.

The ED is also investigating if mobile phones handled by the Chief Minister’s aides and staff were formatted or reported missing soon after the policy was scrapped and the agency and the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) registered separate criminal cases to investigate the alleged irregularities.

While the ED has alleged that Mr. Kejriwal is the “kingpin and key conspirator” of the Delhi excise policy “scam”, the Chief Minister and his party have termed the agency’s action against him “political vendetta” by the BJP-led central government.



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