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Anna Hazare On Arvind Kejriwal's Arrest: 'It's Because Of His Own Deeds'

Reacting to the arrest of the Delhi chief minister, Anna Hazare said on Friday, 'I am very upset that Arvind Kejriwal, who used to work with me, raise his voice against liquor, is now making liquor policies. His arrest is because of his own deeds...'

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Delhi Chief Minister and Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) supremo was arrested by the ED on Thursday evening in the Delhi excise policy or liquor policy "Scam". Photo: File image
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Social activist Anna Hazare, who led the Lokpal movement in the early 2010s along with now-arrested Arvind Kejriwal, broke silence on the arrest of the Delhi chief minister in the liquor policy case by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) and said that Kejriwal's "own deeds" got him arrested.

Delhi Chief Minister and Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) supremo was arrested by the ED on Thursday evening in the Delhi excise policy or liquor policy "Scam".

Allegations are that Delhi government's excise policy for 2021-22 to grant licences to liquor traders allowed cartelisation and favoured certain dealers who had allegedly paid bribes for it, a charge repeatedly refuted by AAP. The policy was subsequently scrapped and the Delhi lieutenant governor recommended a CBI probe, following which the ED registered a case under the PMLA (Prevention of Money Laundering Act).

Reacting to the arrest of the Delhi chief minister, Anna Hazare said on Friday, " I am very upset that Arvind Kejriwal, who used to work with me, raise his voice against liquor, is now making liquor policies. His arrest is because of his own deeds..."

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The arrest of Arvind Kejriwal sparked a massive protest by the AAP in Delhi, during which top party leaders Atishi and Saurabh Bharadwaj among others were detained while traffic movement in the national capital was also affected.

Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Friday withdrew from the Supreme Court his plea against arrest by the ED in the excise policy-linked money laundering case. Kejriwal's counsel said he would contest the remand proceedings before the trial court and then come back to the apex court with another petition.

Senior advocate Abhishek Singhvi, representing Kejriwal, mentioned the matter before a bench headed by Justice Sanjiv Khanna and said since the remand proceedings before the trial court later in the day will be clashing with the hearing in the top court, he be allowed to withdraw the plea.

"You may go there [before trial court]. Just write an e-mail to the registry. We will see," Justice Khanna told Singhvi. Singhvi said, "I will write a letter to the registry. I had to mention this again before this court so that it is convenient for your lordships".

The move came hours after Justice Khanna had told Singhvi that Kejriwal's petition against his arrest would be heard by a three-judge bench during the day.

Kejriwal's name has been mentioned multiple times in the charge sheets filed by the ED, which had summoned him nine times in the said case. The agency has alleged that the accused were in touch with Kejriwal for formulating the excise policy that resulted in undue benefits to them in return for which they paid kickbacks to the AAP.

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