A Delhi court rejected the bail plea of Aam Admi Party (AAP) leader Manish Sisodia on Friday, stating that he was “prima facie the architect” and played an important role in the criminal conspiracy.
Manish Sisodia and other members of the AAP were accused of granting liquor licenses to certain traders in exchange for bribes. After Delhi Lieutenant Governor (LG) VK Saxena recommendation, the (ED) and CBI registered cases in relation to the alleged excise policy scam. Sisodia was arrested by the CBI on February 26 after an interrogation that lasted nearly eight hours.
On February 27, a Delhi court had remanded Sisodia to the CBI custody till March 4 in the case after he was arrested. On March 3, the Deputy Chief Minister of Delhi filed for bail before the Rouse Avenue Court. Special CBI judge MK Nagpal of Rouse Avenue court passed the order rejecting his plea.
In his order, judge MK Nagpal said, “Manish Sisodia was ‘prima facie the architect’ and played the ‘most important and vital role’ in the criminal conspiracy relating to alleged payment of advance kickbacks of around Rs 90-100 crore, meant for him and his colleagues in the Delhi government.”
The court also noted that bail cannot be granted at this time as the release of the senior AAP leader may adversely affect the ongoing investigation and will also seriously hamper its progress. Dinesh Arora has now turned approver in the case. “The 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 crores out of the above are found to have been routed through the co-accused Vijay Nair, Abhishek Boinpally and approver Dinesh Arora and in turn, 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,” read the court order.