A Delhi court on Thursday sent Aam Aadmi Party leader Sanjay Singh to the custody of the Enforcement Directorate for five days till October 10 in connection with the Delhi liquor policy case, reported PTI.
Singh, a Rajya Sabha MP, was arrested by the Enforcement Directorate on Wednesday after the agency conducted searches at his home.
At Thursday’s hearing, Special Public Prosecutor NK Matta, appearing for the Enforcement Directorate, said that an employee of Dinesh Arora, an accused-turned-approver, allegedly delivered Rs 2 crores to Singh’s house on two occasions, reported Live Law.
Seeking Singh’s remand, Matta said that the central agency has to confront the MP with digital evidence. Senior advocate Mohit Mathur, appearing for Singh, said that it can be done even without taking the legislator into custody.
He said that Dinesh Arora was first an accused in the case and then became a witness.
“His stand is changing,” the counsel added. “He is an accused, turns approver, gives statement; the statement is not favourable to ED, ED arrests him and he turns approver in ED case. He changes statement and ED arrests me on that statement.”
However, the agency’s special counsel Zoheb Hossain denied suggestions that Arora’s statement was extracted in favour of granting him bail. “We have statements which corroborate location and CDR [call detail record], which demonstrates that whatever is stated is correct,” he added.
Later, the Aam Aadmi Party leader also addressed the court: “Sir, [another accused] Amit Arora gave tens of statements, Dinesh Arora gave several statements, but they did not remember my name,” he said. “I’m not that unknown that they forgot my name. Now they have suddenly remembered. There’s no separate law. I was not summoned even once. Why different law for me?”
Earlier in the day, Aam Aadmi Party workers and leaders gathered outside the party headquarters to protest against Singh’s arrest, reported The Indian Express.
The protestors were planning to march to the Bharatiya Janata Party headquarters but were stopped by police barricades. They then sat near the barricades but eventually retreated to the party office after the police began moving them away.
The Central Bureau of Investigation and the Enforcement Directorate have alleged that the Aam Aadmi Party government in November 2021 modified the now-scrapped excise policy to ensure a 12% profit margin for wholesalers and a nearly 185% profit margin for retailers.
Former Delhi Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia was arrested in the case by the Central Bureau of Investigation on February 26 and is currently in jail.
The Enforcement Directorate named Singh in its chargesheet filed in December last year, reported The Indian Express. The AAP leader’s name came up in the statement of Dinesh Arora, who said that he initially met Sisodia through Singh.
Singh served a notice to the Enforcement Directorate in April, accusing the agency of carrying out a “false, malicious campaign” against him.
In its reply, the agency said that out of the four references to him in a supplementary chargesheet filed by the agency, “a typographical/clerical error” had inadvertently crept in at one place. “Instead of ‘Rahul Singh’, ‘Sanjay Singh’ was inadvertently mentioned at only one reference,” it said.