Delhi Excise Policy Case: Court Sends Liquor Businessman to 5-Day ED Custody

A court here on Thursday sent liquor businessman Amandeep Dhall to five-day Enforcement Directorate custody for interrogation in a money-laundering matter related to the Delhi excise policy scam case.

Special Judge Vikas Dhull sent the accused to the agency’s custody after it produced him before the court and sought his custodial interrogation.

The Enforcement Directorate (ED) told the court that Dhall was required to be confronted with the other accused persons in the case to unearth the larger conspiracy and find out the money trail.

Dhall, the executive director of Brindco Sales Private Limited, was arrested on Wednesday night under provisions of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) following his questioning, the agency said.

Brindco is a major importer and distributor of a variety of liquor brands and related beverages.

According to a FIR lodged by the CBI, Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) functionary Vijay Nair, Manoj Rai, Dhall and Sameer Mahandru were actively involved in framing and implementing the Delhi government’s excise policy for 2021-22.

The ED’s money-laundering case stems from the CBI FIR, in which former Delhi deputy chief minister Manish Sisodia is currently in CBI custody.

In its second chargesheet filed in the case, the ED had appended the statement of another accused, Arun Pillai, who claimed that Dhall “had a good grasp of the Delhi liquor market and knew all the minute details of the (excise) policy changes”.

“Aman (Dhall) explained to them how the market will work and how to use the loopholes introduced in the policy to their advantage…,” the ED said.

The ED has filed two chargesheets or prosecution complaints in the case so far and arrested 10 people, including Dhal.

The excise policy was scrapped in August last year and the Delhi lieutenant governor subsequently asked the CBI to probe the alleged irregularities and corruption involving government authorities, bureaucrats and liquor traders, among others.

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