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Arvind Kejriwal Withdraws Bail Plea in ED Case, Plans Fresh Challenge in Supreme Court

Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal withdraws plea against Delhi High Court’s final stay on bail granted by trial court in money laundering case linked to scrapped Delhi excise policy, intends to file new petition

Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal has withdrawn his bail plea before the Supreme Court in connection with a money laundering case linked to the now-defunct Delhi excise policy.

This decision comes as Senior Advocate Abhishek Manu Singhvi, representing Kejriwal, informed the court that a final stay order had been issued by the Delhi High Court recently, prompting the need to file a fresh petition challenging this order.

The High Court had earlier imposed an interim stay on a trial court’s decision to grant bail to Kejriwal on June 20. The interim stay was sought by the Enforcement Directorate (ED), which argued that the trial court had not sufficiently considered the evidence presented by the ED and had not provided adequate opportunity for the agency to present its case.

According to the ED, Kejriwal was arrested on March 21 under allegations that he conspired to create loopholes in the Delhi Excise Policy of 2021-22, benefiting certain liquor sellers. The agency claims that funds generated through kickbacks from these sellers were used to finance AAP’s electoral campaign in Goa. The ED holds Kejriwal, as the National Convenor of AAP, personally and vicariously responsible for money laundering offenses.

Kejriwal’s Defiant Stance and Legal Challenges

Kejriwal has vehemently denied these allegations, accusing the ED of engaging in extortion tactics. Other leaders from AAP implicated in the case include former Deputy Chief Minister of Delhi, Manish Sisodia, and Member of Parliament Sanjay Singh. While Singh is currently out on bail, Sisodia remains in custody.

The trial court’s bail order had stipulated a bail bond of ₹1 lakh for Kejriwal, noting the absence of direct evidence linking him to the alleged proceeds of crime or showing that co-accused Vijay Nair acted on Kejriwal’s behalf. The court also criticized the ED for displaying bias against Kejriwal.

Appeals and High Court’s Ruling

Following the trial court’s decision, the ED swiftly moved the Delhi High Court, which granted an interim stay on June 21. Subsequently, Kejriwal approached the Supreme Court to challenge this interim stay. However, the High Court recently issued a final stay on the bail order, prompting Kejriwal to withdraw his previous plea and seek permission to file a fresh petition before the Supreme Court.

The Supreme Court granted Kejriwal permission to file a new petition challenging the final stay order issued by the Delhi High Court.

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