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Arvind Kejriwal to remain in Tihar jail, Delhi HC dismisses plea challenging ED arrest

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The Delhi High Court on April 9 dismissed a plea by Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, who is in judicial custody in a money laundering case linked with the alleged excise scam, challenging his arrest.

Justice Swarana Kanta Sharma pronouncing the order said the national AAP convenor’s arrest by the Enforcement Directorate cannot be termed as ‘illegal’.

“The court is of the view that the arrest of Arvind Kejriwal was not in contravention of legal provisions. The remand can’t be held to be illegal,” said Justice Sharma while delivering the verdict.

The ED was able to place enough material in the shape of Hawala dealers, statements of approvers, and statements of their own candidates who referred to the act that he was given money in cash for expenditure in Goa elections, the High Court said while dismissing Mr. Kejriwal’s plea.

Besides his arrest, Mr. Kejriwal, who is currently lodged in Tihar jail, also challenged his subsequent remand in ED custody in the case.

The AAP national convener questioned the “timing” of his arrest by the agency and said it was in contravention of the basic structure of the Constitution, including democracy, free and fair elections and level playing field.

The ED has opposed the plea and contended that Mr. Kejriwal cannot claim “immunity” from arrest on the grounds of upcoming elections as law is applied equally to him and an “aam aadmi”.

Mr. Kejriwal was arrested by the ED on March 21 after the high court refused to grant him protection from coercive action by the federal anti-money laundering agency.

He was sent to judicial custody in the case on April 1 after he was produced in the trial court on expiry of ED custody.

The matter pertains to the alleged corruption and money laundering in formulating and executing the Delhi Government’s excise policy for 2021-22 that was later scrapped.

source: The Hindu

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