Delhi excise policy case: HC seeks CBI’s response on Kejriwal’s petition challenging his arrest

Senior advocate Abhishek Manu Singhvi, representing Kejriwal, argued that the probe agency had registered the FIR in August 2022, yet the arrest occurred nearly two years later.
Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal
Delhi Chief Minister Arvind KejriwalFile photo

NEW DELHI: The Delhi High Court on Tuesday issued a notice to the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) in response to a plea filed by Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal challenging his arrest in the excise policy case. The next hearing of the case has been scheduled for July 17.

Senior advocate Abhishek Manu Singhvi, representing Kejriwal, argued that the probe agency had registered the FIR in August 2022, yet the arrest occurred nearly two years later.

“He (Kejriwal) was summoned in April 2023 and questioned for nine hours. Since April, no further action has been taken. He is now arrested based on the 2022 FIR. There can’t be a necessity or urgency for this arrest,” Singhvi told the court.

Singhvi also said that Kejriwal is already under judicial custody in another case with the Enforcement Directorate (ED), negating any risk of tampering with evidence, influencing witnesses, or fleeing. “The arrest memo must reflect substantial reasons. Concerns such as terrorism or interference are irrelevant in this case since he was already in judicial custody,” he further told the court.

Singhvi also told the court that they are soon going to file for a regular bail plea in the case. After hearing Singhvi’s submissions, Justice Neena Bansal Krishna directed the federal probe agency to submit its response by July 17.

On June 26, the probe agency arrested Kejriwal from inside Delhi’s Rouse Avenue Court premises, following permission granted by a special judge.

The move came on the day the Supreme Court was scheduled to hear Kejriwal’s plea challenging a Delhi High Court order that had stayed the bail granted to him by a lower court. Following his arrest by the CBI, Kejriwal’s lawyer withdrew the plea, which the Supreme Court allowed.

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