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Delhi excise scam: CBI names Manish Sisodia as 'accused no 1' in FIR

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New Delhi, Aug 19: The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) on Friday named Delhi Education Minister Manish Sisodia as prime accused in the excise policy case.

Sisodia is among 15 persons booked by name in the FIR filed by CBI. Excise officials, liquor company executives, dealers along with unknown public servants and private persons have too been booked in the case.

Delhi Excise policy case: CBI names Manish Sisodia as prime accused

A liquor trader paid Rs 1 crore to a company managed by an associate of Delhi Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia, the CBI has claimed in its FIR on alleged corruption in the framing and implementation of the excise policy 2021-22.

The FIR was registered on a reference from the office of Lieutenant Governor V K Saxena routed through the Union Home Ministry. The agency has alleged that Sisodia and other accused public servants recommended and took decisions pertaining to the excise policy 2021-22 without the approval of competent authority with "an intention to extend undue favours to the licencees post tender".

It said Vijay Nair, former CEO of Only Much Louder, an entertainment and event management company, Manoj Rai, former employee of Pernod Ricard, Amandeep Dhal, owner of Brindco Spirits, and Sameer Mahendru, owner of Indospirits, were actively involved in irregularities in the framing and implementation of the excise policy brought in November last year.

The agency has alleged Amit Arora, Director of Buddy Retail Pvt. Limited in Gurgaon, Dinesh Arora and Arjun Pandey are "close associates" of Sisodia and were "actively involved in managing and diverting the undue pecuniary advantage collected from liquor licensees" for the accused public servants.

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    The CBI has alleged that Radha Industries managed by Dinesh Arora received Rs 1 crore from Sameer Mahendru of Indospirits.

    Earlier in the day, CBI raided the Delhi residence of Sisodia, 50, that of IAS officer and former Delhi excise commissioner Arava Gopi Krishna and 19 other locations across seven states and Union Territories after it registered an FIR to investigate alleged irregularities in the formulation and execution of the Delhi Excise Policy brought out in November last year.

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    The policy was scrapped by the Delhi government in July. Sisodia holds multiple portfolios in the Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal-led Delhi government including that of excise and education.

    The scheme came under the scanner after Delhi Lt Governor V K Saxena last month recommended a CBI probe into alleged irregularities in the implementation of the Excise Policy 2021-22. He also suspended 11 excise officials in the matter.

    Sisodia too demanded a CBI probe into the alleged irregularities in the policy.

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