Kejriwal to physically attend court proceedings on March 16

Kejriwal informed the court of his inability to physically attend the proceedings due to his engagement in the Delhi Budget matter. However, he assured the court that he would be present in person for the next hearing.

| Updated: 17 February, 2024 12:58 pm IST

NEW DELHI: In the latest development surrounding the Delhi Excise Policy Scam, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal appeared before the Rouse Avenue Court via Video Conferencing on Saturday.

Kejriwal informed the court of his inability to physically attend the proceedings due to his engagement in the Delhi Budget matter. However, he assured the court that he would be present in person for the next hearing.

The court has scheduled March 16 as the next date for proceedings, during which Kejriwal intends to attend in person.

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The Enforcement Directorate (ED) had previously issued six summonses to Kejriwal, with the latest one calling for his appearance on February 19. However, with the court setting March 16 as the subsequent date, it remains uncertain if Kejriwal will comply with the sixth summons.

Kejriwal’s absence from five consecutive summons prompted the ED to approach the Rouse Avenue Court, resulting in a complaint filed against him. Despite Kejriwal’s contention that the summons were unlawful, the court’s order mandates his presence.

In response to the court’s directive, the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) stated their intention to review the order and take necessary legal steps. They aim to challenge the validity of the ED’s summonses.

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The ED filed a complaint against Kejriwal under various sections of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) and the Prevention of Money Laundering Act after he failed to respond to the agency’s summons.

While Kejriwal cooperated with the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) probe into the Delhi Excise Policy matter, he has refrained from joining the ED’s investigation. Alleging political vendetta, Kejriwal has denounced the ED’s actions as orchestrated by the BJP.

Kejriwal maintains that the summonses issued by the ED are unlawful, emphasising the need for clarity on the purpose of the interrogation, whether as Delhi CM or AAP convenor.

To date, the ED has filed five charge sheets in the matter, including one main charge sheet and four supplementary charge sheets.

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