Monday, May 27, 2024

Delhi High Court rejects Arvind Kejriwal plea challenging ED arrest

The Delhi High Court on Tuesday dismissed a plea filed by Delhi Chief Minister and Aam Admi Party supremo Arvind Kejriwal challenging his arrest by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) in connection with the Delhi Excise Policy case, as well as the remand order passed by the trial court sending him to ED custody.

“We hold that judges are bound by law not politics. Judgments are given on legal principles not political considerations. Court cannot go into the realm of politics,” said Justice Swarana Kanta Sharma, who reserved the verdict after hearing arguments at length on 3 April.

The HC also upheld the subsequent remand orders of the trial court, including the order through which Kejriwal was sent to judicial custody.

“This Court is of the opinion that the accused has been arrested and his arrest and remand has to be examined as per law and not as per timing of elections…Shri Kejriwal must have been aware of the Lok Sabha dates, he would have known when the elections were to be held…,” Justice Sharma said.

“The material collected by ED reveals Mr Arvind Kejriwal conspired and was actively involved in use and concealment of proceeds of crime. The ED case also reveals that he was involved in his personal capacity as well as convenor of AAP,” the Court said.

“It is not for the accused to decide how the investigation is to be done. It cannot be as per the convenience of the accused. There cannot be any specific privilege for any one including the Chief Minister,” said Justice Sharma rejecting the contention that the Chief Minister could have been questioned by the ED via video conference.

The Enforcement Directorate had arrested Kejriwal last month in connection with allegations related to the capital city’s liquor policy and he had been remanded to the agency’s custody until April 1. The Delhi court has sent the key opposition leader to jail until April 15, less than three weeks before the country begins voting in a seven-phase national election.

Kejriwal’s Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) said he has been “falsely arrested” in a “fabricated” case ahead of the polls.

INDIA bloc, an alliance of 27 opposition parties including AAP, came together at a rally in New Delhi to protest Kejriwal’s arrest and accused Modi of seeking to rig the election.

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