Delhi Excise Policy: CBI Calls Manish Sisodia For Questioning, He Says ‘Will Cooperate’

Delhi Excise Policy Case: The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) asked Deputy CM Manish Sisodia to appear before it on Sunday in connection with the Delhi Excise Policy case. The agency called Sisodia for questioning nearly three months after filing the charge sheet in the case, PTI quoted officials as saying. 

The officials added that Sisodia has not been named as accused in the charge sheet as the investigation against him and other suspects is still going on. 

Sisodia tweeted on Saturday that he has been called for questioning yet again, and he would continue cooperating in the investigation. 

“CBI has called again tomorrow. They have used the full power of CBI, ED against me, raided my house, searched bank locker, but nothing was found against me,” he said. 

He added, “I have worked to provide good education of Delhi’s children and they want to stop it.” Sisodia added that nothing was found against him during searches. 

According to PTI, Sisodia, who also held the charge of the Excise department, was earlier questioned on October 17 last year and his home and bank lockers were also searched in connection with the case. 

“The further investigation in the case regarding the money trail and the larger conspiracy in the formulation and implementation of Delhi Excise Policy 2021-22 is still in progress,” an official said, as quoted by PTI. 

In a veiled jibe at the centre, Sisodia said that the CBI has been made to go after him because “they” want to stop him from doing “good work” on the education of the children in Delhi. 

“They want to stop me. I have always cooperated with the investigation and will continue to do so,” he said. 

As per the report, the agency said that it is now focused on the alleged influence of a “South Lobby” of businessmen and politicians in formulating and implementing Delhi liquor policy to swing it in their favour using middlemen, liquor traders, and public servants. 

Arrested businessmen Vijay Nair and Abhishek Boinpally are among the seven accused in the charge sheet filed on November 25 last year, a PTI report mentioned. 

As for the case, it is alleged that the Delhi government’s policy to grant licences to liquor traders favoured certain dealers who had allegedly paid bribes for it, a charge AAP strongly refutes. 

“It was further alleged that irregularities were committed including modifications in Excise Policy, extending undue favours to the licensees, waiver/reduction in licence fee, extension of L-1 license without approval etc…It was also alleged that illegal gains on the count of these acts were diverted to concerned public servants by private parties by making false entries in their books of accounts,” a CBI spokesperson had said, according to PTI. 

Recently, the CBI arrested Butchibabu Gorantla, a former Chartered Accountant of K Kavitha, a BRS MLC in Telangana and a daughter of Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao in connection with the case.

A PTI report says it is alleged that Babu had met several accused named in the FIR in Delhi, Hyderabad, and Mumbai and was one of the prime negotiators from the South Lobby, which wanted to swing the now scrapped excise policy for 2021-22 in its favour. 

The CBI also questioned Kavitha in connection with the case in December last year. 

During its probe, the CBI found proof that Babu acted on behalf of the South Lobby comprising the Telangana MLC, YSRCP MP Magunta Srinivasulu Reddy, and Aurobindo Pharma’s P Sarat Chandra Reddy. 

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