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ED rejects Arvind Kejriwal’s ‘arrest linked to polls’ claim in Delhi high court

The Delhi high court on Wednesday reserved its judgement in Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal’s plea challenging his arrest & remand over his alleged involvement in the capital’s controversial Delhi excise policy.

Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal was arrested by the ED on March 21 in Delhi excise policy case (File Photo)

Earlier, the Enforcement Directorate rejected Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal’s allegations of his arrest around the Lok Sabha elections disturbs the ‘level playing field’ and is against the basic structure.

Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal arrest LIVE coverage

During the hearing in the Delhi high court, additional solicitor general (ASG) SV Raju, argued on behalf of ED saying that Kejriwal has “so much influence and has copies of chargesheets, relied and unrelied documents”.

Here are 10 things that the ED said in its argument in the Delhi high court:

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1. ASG Raju, appearing for ED, said,”Criminals and under-trials have no business to say that we will commit a crime and will not be arrested because elections are here. This is completely ridiculous. It will give license to criminals to roam around freely. Aam aadmi has to go behind bars if he has committed a crime but because you are a chief minister you can’t be arrested? You will loot the country but no one can touch you because the elections are coming? You say your arrest will infringe on basic structure? What type of basic structure is this?”

ALSO READ: Arvind Kejriwal Delhi high court hearing: ‘Bid to stop me from participating in election’

2. The ED counsel said that the Delhi chief minister’s plea is being argued if it is a bail application or a quashing petition. Raju said that though some properties have already been attached, the agency is also willing to attach more properties. “But if we attach them there would be allegations that the action was taken during elections.If we don’t do that then they will say where is the proof? So I am in a bit of a dilemma. We are thus in a catch 22 situation,” he added.

3. ED said that investigation against Kejriwal is at a nascent stage. The arguments have been made as if the probe has been completed and chargesheet filed.

4. The ASG told court that it is a clear case (plea challenging ED arrest) of “waiver & acquiescence”. “You (Kejriwal) cannot ride 2 horses at the same time (challenge the remand order & then say please pass the order & I will accept it. He has not challenged the latest order (April 1),” he added.

ALSO READ: Tihar Jail counters AAP’s claim that Kejriwal lost weight: ‘Constant at 65’

5. Continuing his arguments, the ED counsel said,”His custody today is with regards to the latest order (April 1). Even if the orders (March 22 & 28) are set aside, he will not be entitled to be released cause his custody is not because of the previous orders but of April 1. This will be an academic exercise. This is a bail application in the guise of writ. It’s nothing but a bail application.”

6. The ED told the high court that there is a scam is beyond doubt today. “Howsoever you make hue & cry today but it is clear that there was a scam and exchequer along with public have been deprived of the money. The fact that there was a scam running into 100 crore was not at the time of elections. They cannot take a bogey of elections. The elections have come now. It’s not as if ED has become active now,” the ED counsel said.

7. “Though Kejriwal’s attitude is that “I am a saint” but whatever has been done has been done “very tactfully.” Kejriwal is not only individually but also vicariously involved,” Raju argued in court.

ALSO READ: AAP to observe ‘samhuik upwas’ on April 7 against Arvind Kejriwal’s arrest

8. The ASG argued,”Where is the question that nothing was found in my house? You used money in the Goa elections. When ED asked you where is the money, you say I don’t know.”

9. “Concealment can be in different ways. It can be sent abroad & then ED asks you say I don’t know. Finding of proceeds of crime is irrelevant. You argue that nothing was found from your house. If you gave the money to someone else, how will it be recovered from your house,” ED told the court.

10. Raju said in court that though Kejriwal’s argument is that there is no new material but the ED has WhatsApp chats, hawala operation statements, large amount of income tax data. “It’s not as if we are shooting in the dark,” Raju added.

(With bureau inputs)

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