A Delhi court on Monday extended the judicial custody of Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal till April 23 in connection with the liquor policy case, reported The Indian Express.

Kejriwal was arrested by the Enforcement Directorate on March 21 and is currently lodged in Tihar jail. At Monday’s hearing the Enforcement Directorate sought a 14-day extension of the Aam Aadmi Party chief’s custody.

Meanwhile, the Supreme Court on Monday sought a response from the Enforcement Directorate by April 24 on a petition filed by Kejriwal against his arrest, reported Live Law.

A division bench of Justices Sanjiv Khanna and Dipankar Datta ordered the central agency to file its rejoinder, if required, by April 26 and listed the matter for hearing on April 29.

The national convenor of the Aam Aadmi Party had moved the Supreme Court on April 10 after the Delhi High Court rejected his petition against his arrest. Kejriwal is currently lodged in Tihar jail.

During Monday’s hearing, Senior Advocate Abhishek Manu Singhvi, appearing for Kejriwal, described the arrest as “unusual”, noting that the Aam Aadmi Party leader was not mentioned in the agency’s first information report, its Enforcement Case Information Report or any of the eight chargesheets filed in the Delhi liquor policy case by the Central Bureau of Investigation and the Enforcement Directorate.

“Point number two, the story starts from September 2022,” Singhvi said. “He was arrested on March 21, 2024. Between that time, there are 16 statements, 10 by one person, Sarath Reddy, and six by others. All 15 statements do not state the above [prove the allegations against Kejriwal]. One statement becomes positive, the object of arrest, post the model code of conduct, is to disable me [Kejriwal] from campaigning [for the Lok Sabha polls].”

While rejecting the chief minister’s plea, the High Court had said on April 9 that the statements of Hyderabad-based businessman Sarath Chandra Reddy and Telugu Desam Party leader Raghav Magunta, two persons accused in the case who later turned approvers – or government witnesses – could not be doubted.

Hours before Kejriwal’s arrest, electoral bond data released by the Election Commission showed a company linked to Reddy had donated Rs 5 crore to the Bharatiya Janata Party in 2022, just five days after Reddy was taken in custody.

Another Rs 25 crore was donated to the BJP after Reddy turned approver in the case.

Magunta Sreenivasulu Reddy, the father of Raghav Magunta, got a Lok Sabha election ticket from the Telugu Desam Party, an ally of the BJP, on March 29.

The Enforcement Directorate is investigating allegations of money laundering in the Delhi liquor policy case based on the first information report filed by the Central Bureau of Investigation.

The two central agencies have alleged that the Aam Aadmi Party government modified Delhi’s now-scrapped liquor excise policy by increasing the commission of wholesalers from 5% to 12%. This allegedly facilitated the receipt of bribes from wholesalers who had a substantial market share and turnover.

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