Last Updated: March 05, 2023, 10:27 IST
PM Modi with West Bengal CM Mamata Banerjee and Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal (File Photo)
Opposition leaders have stated that Sisodia’s arrest proves that India’s democratic values stand threatened under BJP’s regime
A day after former Delhi deputy CM Manish Sisodia’s CBI custody was extended by two more days, nine opposition leaders including CM Arvind Kejriwal, Bihar Deputy CM Tejashwi Yadav and Telangana CM K Chandrasekhar Rao, wrote to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, alleging misuse of central agencies.
In the letter dated March 5, the leaders described Sisodia’s arrest as the result of a “long political witch hunt”, claiming the leader was arrested despite lack of evidence against him the Delhi excise policy case.
Leaders have stated that Sisodia’s arrest proves that India’s democratic values stand threatened under BJP’s regime. “The allegations against Sisodia are outrightly baseless and smack of a political conspiracy. His arrest has enraged people across the country. Manish Sisodia is recognised globally for transforming Delhi’s school education and his arrest will be cited as an example of a political witch-hunt.”
Nine Opposition leaders including Arvind Kejriwal have written to PM Modi on the arrest of former Delhi deputy CM Manish Sisodia in the excise policy case. They have stated that the action appears to suggest that “we have transitioned from being a democracy to an autocracy”. pic.twitter.com/ohXn3rNuxI— ANI (@ANI) March 5, 2023
The letter claimed that since 2014, most raids, investigations, and interrogations have been against opposition leaders. “Interestingly, probe agencies go slow on cases against opposition leaders who join BJP,” the letter read.
In this regard, opposition leaders cited some examples, like the CBI and Enforcement Directorate probe in 2014 against Himanta Biswa Sarma in the Saradha chit fund scam. Leaders claimed that the probe was called off after Sarma joined BJP.
Similarly, the letter stated examples of former Trinamool Congress leaders Mukul Roy and Suvendu Adhikari who were being probed by ED in the Narada sting operation case. However, the probe didn’t progress after they joined BJP, the letter said.
Nine opposition leaders — Mamata Banerjee, K Chandrasekhar Rao, Arvind Kejriwal, Uddhav Thackeray, Bhagwant Mann, Tejashwi Yadav, Farooq Abdullah, Sharad Pawar and Akhilesh Yadav — sent the letter to PM Modi.
The letter also highlighted incidents of disagreement between Governors and the state government in some places. “Governors are wilfully undermining democratically elected state governments and choosing instead to obstruct governance as per their whims and fancies,” the letter said, adding that such incidents are widening the gap between the Centre and the states.
The CBI has confronted ex-deputy chief minister Manish Sisodia with his former secretary C Arvind and then Excise commissioner Arava Gopi Krishna in connection with alleged manipulation of the now-scrapped Delhi Excise Policy, officials said Saturday.
CBI alleged that the Delhi government’s excise policy for 2021-22 to grant licences to liquor traders favoured certain dealers who had allegedly paid bribes for it, a charge strongly refuted by the AAP. The policy was later scrapped.
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