Arvind Kejriwal withdraws plea challenging arrest, will contest ED custody first

Arvind Kejriwal on Friday withdrew his petition filed to the Supreme Court against his arrest by the Enforcement Directorate. A special three-judge bench was scheduled to hear the matter after agreeing to an urgent hearing earlier in the day.
Arvind Kejriwal withdraws plea challenging arrest, will contest ED custody first
Anjali Raj / Jaano Junction

Arvind Kejriwal on Friday withdrew the petition in the Supreme Court against his arrest by the Enforcement Directorate in the Delhi liqour policy case. His lawyer, Abhishek Manu Singhvi, told the top court that their plea is clashing with the Enforcement Directorate's petition seeking the remand of Delhi Chief Minister, which is pending at the lower Rouse Avenue Court, and the legal team will fight that first.

A special three-judge bench comprising Justice Sanjiv Khanna, Justice MM Sundresh and Justice Bela Dwivedi was scheduled to hear Kejriwal's plea. Earlier in the day, the Supreme Court agreed to urgently hear the arrested Delhi Chief Minister's plea against his arrest.

Kejriwal is the first sitting Chief Minister to be arrested. Meanwhile, AAP leaders - who called for a nationwide protest today - began a demonstration in Delhi. Some prominent Delhi ministers such as Atishi and Saurabh Bharadwaj were detained by the Delhi Police.

Here are the top developments in this big story:

  • Delhi minister and AAP leader Atishi said on Friday that the party is "concerned" about Arvind Kejriwal's safety and security. "Arvind Kejriwal is Z+ protectee. He is under central government's ED’s custody," she said at a press briefing on Friday, adding that Prime Minister Narendra Modi wants to finish off the Opposition.

  • Gopal Rai claimed that Kejriwal's family has been put under house arrest, and the AAP is unable to even contact the Delhi Chief Minister's parents. Rai initially alleged that he was not disallowed to meet Kejriwal's family, but he was later allowed.

  • According to Congress sources, Congress MP Rahul Gandhi spoke to Kejriwal over the phone and is going to visit his residence at 10 am to meet the Delhi Chief Minister's family members. He has also assured them of his support

  • AAP's Delhi unit convenor Gopal Rai, who is also Delhi Environment Minister, along with his colleague Atishi and party MP Sandeep Pathak held a midnight press briefing on Thursday after Kejriwal's arrest. Rai termed Kejriwal's arrest "murder of democracy" and an "announcement of dictatorship". "We will gather at the AAP office at 10 am on Friday and then protest outside the BJP headquarters," he added.

  • Gopal Rai said that today's protest is an "open" stir and anyone who is against the BJP's dictatorship is "welcome to join". He also called on Delhiites to join the fight, saying the saffron party had "crossed all limits". Atishi, meanwhile, assured support from INDIA bloc members.

  • Several Opposition leaders have condemned the arrest of Arvind Kejriwal, including Rahul Gandhi, NCP (SP) MP Supriya Sule, and Trinamool Congress's Derek O'Brien. On X, Rahul Gandhi hit out at Prime Minister Narendra Modi, saying a "scared dictator wants to create a dead democracy". He also said that the INDIA alliance would give a "befitting reply"

  • The BJP, meanwhile, took a fresh swipe at Arvind Kejriwal by calling him a "chor (thief)" on X. The BJP also released an old video of Kejriwal, in which he said that if tomorrow Manish Sisodia or he himself is accused of theft, they would need to go to jail. Sisodia is already behind bars in the alleged Delhi liqour policy case.

    "Today Arvind Kejriwal's wish has been fulfilled," BJP tweet, roughly translated from Hindi, read.

  • There has been massive traffic jam across Delhi since Friday morning as Delhi Police have tightened security and barricaded several roads in anticipation of protests. Jam was prominent in ITO on the road heading to DDU Marg (AAP office). Furthermore, the Delhi Metro Corporation (DMRC) announced on X ITO metro station will remain shut between 8 am and 6 pm on Friday on the "advice of Delhi Police".

    Security has also been strengthened on roads leading to BJP headquarters in Delhi in view of AAP leaders and workers protest against Kejriwal's arrest.

  • Following the Delhi Chief Minister's arrest, AAP leader and minister Saurabh Bharadwaj said the ED seized Rs 70,000 in cash during its search of Arvind Kejriwal's residence. Bharadwaj further said that the probe agency returned the recovered cash. Furthermore, the mobile phones of Kejriwal and his family members were also taken away by officials, sources said.

    The mobile phones of Kejriwal and his family members were also taken away by the officials, sources said.

Also Read
Supreme Court agrees to urgently hear arrested Arvind Kejriwal’s plea
Arvind Kejriwal withdraws plea challenging arrest, will contest ED custody first
  • Arvind Kejriwal's arrest came after the Delhi High Court on Thursday refused to grant him interim protection from coercive action in connection with the nine summons to him by the Enforcement Directorate.

Source: India Today

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