Hours after being grilled by the Central Bureau of Investigations (CBI), Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia heads to Gujarat for the upcoming election campaigning in the state. Sisodia is currently locked in a battle with the CBI after he alleged that he was forced to quit the AAP party during questioning. The CBI however, sent a strong rebuttal stating it as a fake allegation.
Sisodia was called for questioning in connection with the now-scrapped Delhi Excise Policy scam. In the scam, pegged at a staggering figure of 10,000 crore, it is alleged that Sisodia while heading the excise department gave undue favours to liquor vendors and businessmen. Two people including Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) communication incharge have been arrested by the CBI so far in this case.
Earlier The Enforcement Directorate (ED) had arrested Sameer Mahendru, managing director of Jor Bagh-based liquor distributor Indospirit Group in relation to the alleged scam. CBI and ED have conducted over 2000 raids in the Excise Policy case and claimed to have recovered incriminating evidence against the accused persons which include Sisodia.
On Monday, Sisodia was called for questioning at 11 am. Before reaching CBI headquarters, Sisodia had said that the CBI had filed a ‘fake’ case to arrest him in order to derail AAP’s campaigning in poll-bound Gujarat.
Addressing his party workers Sisodia exhorted his party workers not to be affected by the current events. The AAP leaders had compared Sisodia with Shaheed Bhagat Singh. On Monday, over 150 party workers were detained for protesting in front of the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) headquarters when the questioning of Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia was underway. The detained AAP leaders included Rajya Sabha MP Sanjay Singh, MLAs Durgesh Pathak and Rakhi Bidlan, and others. They, along with other workers, were taken to a nearby police station by the Delhi Police. Delhi Police had also booked them for violating prohibitory orders as section 144 (no gathering) was imposed around the CBI headquarters.
Ahead of the questioning of Sisodia, the police imposed section 144 CrPC outside his residence and a number of police personnel were also deployed to avoid untoward incidents in case of a protest by the AAP workers. Sisodia was released after being grilled for 9 hours. As of now, he has not been asked to come but CBI sources say that they may call him again at any time.