Excise Policy probe: CBI prepared with detailed questionnaire for Manish Sisodia

Nearly three months after filing its charge sheet, the CBI will question Sisodia on various aspects of the Excise policy.

Published: 25th February 2023 07:40 PM  |   Last Updated: 25th February 2023 07:40 PM   |  A+A-

Delhi Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia.(File| Express)

Delhi Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia.(File| Express)


NEW DELHI: The CBI has prepared an exhaustive set of questions for Delhi Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia who is likely to appear for questioning before investigators in connection with the Excise policy case probe on Sunday amid apprehensions of his arrest.

Sisodia, who also holds the Finance portfolio in the Delhi Cabinet, was originally summoned last Sunday but he sought deferment of his questioning citing the ongoing Budget exercise, following which, the CBI had asked him to appear on February 26.

Sisodia has expressed apprehensions that agencies might arrest him.

"They are using the CBI to take revenge and I am sure they will do that by getting me arrested," he charged.

The Aam Admi Party leader was earlier examined for a day on October 17 last year, nearly a month before the central probe agency had filed its charge sheet against seven people, including middlemen and liquor traders, in which Sisodia was not listed as accused, but the agency had kept the probe into his alleged role open.

Nearly three months after filing its charge sheet, the CBI will question Sisodia on various aspects of the Excise policy, his alleged links with liquor traders, and politicians and claims made by witnesses in their statements.

Armed with confessional statements of Sisodia's "close associate" Dinesh Arora, and information gleaned from questioning of alleged members of 'South Lobby', a coterie of politicians and liquor businessmen who allegedly swung the policy in their favour, the CBI has prepared an elaborate questionnaire for him, the officials said.

It is alleged the Delhi government's policy to grant licences to liquor traders favoured certain dealers who had allegedly paid bribes for it, a charge strongly refuted by the AAP.

"It was further alleged that irregularities were committed including modifications in Excise Policy, extending undue favours to the licensees, waiver/reduction in licence fee, the 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.

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.

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

During its probe, the CBI had found evidence that Babu acted on behalf of the South Lobby comprising the Telangana MLC, Yuvajana Sramika Rythu Congress Party MP Magunta Srinivasulu Reddy, and Aurobindo Pharma's P Sarat Chandra Reddy.


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