(MENAFN-IANS) New Delhi, May 26 (IANS) In the Delhi excise policy scam case, the Directorate of Law Enforcement (ED) claimed in its indictment that Delhi’s former deputy chief minister Manish Sisodia had intentionally superseded a draft entire cabinet memo containing crucial legal opinions from two former chief justices of India – Ranjan Gogoi and KG Balakrishnan – as well as Mukul Rohtagi, a senior barrister and former attorney general of India, with a new one, sources say.
The sources said the old draft cabinet memo interfered with the pursuit of Sisodia’s ulterior motives, including providing assistance to the Southern Group, and therefore would have been destroyed.
The sources said the new draft policy favors the agenda of the Southern Group and Sisodia. While investigating the matter, the ED learned that the filing presented to them by the Excise Department contained no old legal advice. The sources said a crucial memo containing a legal opinion was removed from the file. When the ED investigated further, they learned that excise officer Gaurav Mann had handed over the old, unsigned draft to Sisodia staff in January 2021.
When questioned by the ED, Mann revealed that he had not received the draft memo.
The ED called it a conspiracy by Sisodia, alleging that the defendant did everything possible to ensure that the firm’s old memo containing the legal opinion could not be recorded.
ED traced the file and discovered that the old cabinet note file was eventually handed over to Sisodia by DANIC manager Pravesh Jha after which it disappeared.
The filing was reportedly handed over to Sisodia on January 28, 2021. However, when the ED grilled Sisodia about it, he denied receiving a note. The ED alleged that the file had been destroyed by Sisodia.
“Sisodia also created a legal front by creating a WhatsApp account using his PA Devender Sharma’s phone number. And he destroyed the old note,” the source said.
The ED case is based on the CBI’s FIR (First Information Report). So far, the ED has filed four indictments in the case, one main indictment and three supplemental indictments.
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