New Delhi: The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) on Tuesday filed a supplementary charge sheet against former Delhi deputy chief minister Manish Sisodia in the excise policy scam case. The CBI, which arrested Sisodia in February this year, also named Hyderabad-based CA Butchi Babu Gorantla, liquor trader Amandeep Singh Dhall and private person Arjun Pandey in the new charge sheet. It invoked IPC 120-B (criminal conspiracy), 201 and 420 besides provisions of the Prevention of Corruption Act.
In its charge sheet filed before a special CBI court here, the agency said the probe is kept open to look into larger conspiracy and the role of other accused in the case.
The CBI had filed the last charge sheet on November 25, 2022.
The CBI arrested Sisodia for alleged corruption in the formulation and implementation of the now-scrapped Delhi Excise Policy 2021-22 on February 26 following several rounds of questioning.
It is alleged that the Arvind Kejriwal-led Delhi government’s excise policy for 2021-22 to grant licences to liquor traders favoured certain dealers who had allegedly paid bribes for it, a charge strongly refuted by the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP). The policy was later scrapped.
It is further alleged that irregularities were committed, including modifications in the excise policy, extending undue favours to the licensees, waiver/reduction in licence fee, the extension of L-1 license without approval etc.
A CBI spokesperson had said after the FIR was filed on August 17 last year that it is 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.
The CBI last week claimed before the Delhi High Court that Manish Sisodia, arrested in connection with the excise policy scam case, is involved in the commission of grave economic offences and is key to unravelling the modus operandi of the crime.
The submissions were made by the CBI in a short written reply while opposing the senior AAP leader’s bail plea, which it said was devoid of any merit and was an attempt to misuse the intricacies of the law to thwart the progress of the investigation in the case.
While the CBI contended that Sisodia is the ‘kingpin and architect of the conspiracy’ and his influence and clout disentitle him to any parity with the co-accused enlarged on bail, the AAP leader urged the high court to grant him bail claiming no money trail linking him to the proceeds of the alleged crime has been found.