Kejriwal next on ED radar? Delhi chief minister cries conspiracy by BJP to topple his Govt


Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal and State Assembly Speaker Ram Niwas Goel await to receive Delhi Lieutenant Governor Vinai Kumar Saxena during the opening day of the Budget Session of the Delhi Assembly, in New Delhi on Thursday. (ANI Photo/Jitender Gupta)

Senior AAP leader Atishi also claimed that the BJP has approached several AAP MLAs with bribes and threats in a bid to induce defection

Our Bureau
New Delhi

After alleging that the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) is trying to poach AAP MLAs and topple his government, Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal moved a Motion of Confidence in the assembly on Friday. The proceedings of the House will take place on Saturday and the motion will be taken up for discussion.

The Budget session that convened on Thursday is expected to continue till February 21. Earlier, CM Kejriwal alleged that the BJP was conspiring to topple the Aam Aadmi Party government and that some of his party MLAs had been offered bribes to leave the party and break his government.

“Recently, they (BJP) have contacted our 7 MLAs from Delhi and said-We will arrest Kejriwal after a few days. After that, we will break the MLAs. Talks have been held with 21 MLAs. Talking to others as well. After that, we will topple the Aam Aadmi Party government in Delhi. You also come, we will give you Rs 25 crore and get you to contest the elections on BJP ticket,” Kejriwal posted on X.

“Although they claim that they have contacted 21 MLAs, but as per our information, they have contacted only 7 MLAs so far and all of them have refused,” Kejriwal said.

The Delhi CM said that this means that “I am not being arrested to investigate any liquor scam, but they are conspiring to topple the Aam Aadmi Party government in Delhi.”

“In the last nine years, they have hatched many conspiracies to topple our government. But they did not have any success. God and the people always supported us. All our MLAs are also strongly united. This time also, these people will fail in their nefarious intentions,” Kejriwal said.’

The Delhi CM further claimed in his post that the BJP knows how much work the AAP government has done for the people of Delhi, and despite all the obstacles created by the BJP, the AAP government in Delhi has accomplished so much.

“The people of Delhi love ‘AAP’ immensely. Therefore, it is not in their power to defeat AAP in the elections. So they want to topple the government by making arrests on the pretext of a fake liquor scam,” said the post by Kejriwal.

Senior AAP leader Atishi also claimed that the BJP has approached several AAP MLAs with bribes and threats in a bid to induce defection. The AAP leader said, “BJP has started ‘Operation Lotus 2.0’, and is trying to topple the democratically elected AAP government in Delhi. 7 MLAs of the AAP have been contacted by the BJP, and have been told, that Arvind Kejriwal will be arrested soon, after which there will be a rift among AAP MLAs. They are in touch with 21 of our MLAs, using whom they aim to topple the Delhi government.”

Meanwhile, the Enforcement Directorate (ED) has issued a sixth summons to Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal in a money laundering probe related to irregularities in the Delhi Excise Policy 2021-22 case asking him to join the investigation on February 19. The fresh summons to the Delhi Chief Minister were issued after he skipped the fifth summons on February 2.

Kejriwal has so far skipped five previous summons issued by the ED on February 2, January 18, January 3, November 2 and December 22, calling them “illegal and politically motivated”.

The ED wants to record Kejriwal’s statement in the case on issues like the formulation of policy, meetings held before it was finalised, and allegations of bribery. While skipping the fifth summons issued by the ED, Kejriwal termed it “illegal”, saying he was ready to cooperate but the agency’s intention was to arrest him and stop him from election campaigning.

On Kejriwal’s role, one of the six charge sheets filed in January 2023 states that Kejriwal told businessman Sameer Mahendru that former AAP communications in-charge Vijay Nair “is his boy” and that he should trust him.

Delhi Lieutenant Governor Vinai Kumar Saxena’s move to order a probe into alleged irregularities in the regime prompted the scrapping of the policy. The AAP has accused Saxena’s predecessor, Anil Baijal, of sabotaging the move with a few last-minute changes that resulted in lower-than-expected revenues.

Two senior AAP leaders — Manish Sisodia and Sanjay Singh — are already under judicial custody in the case. Sisodia, who was the then Delhi Deputy Chief Minister, was arrested by the CBI on February 26 following several rounds of questioning and on October 5, the ED arrested Singh, who is a Rajya Sabha member.

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