Delhi Excise policy: ED seizes Rs 1 cr cash after raids

Enforcement Directorate has seized about Rs 1 crore in cash after raids conducted in connection with a money laundering investigation into the alleged irregularities in the now-scrapped Delhi excise policy, official sources said Saturday.

The searches were launched on Friday at about 35 locations in Delhi-NCR, Punjab and Telangana’s capital Hyderabad.

About a crore cash has been seized from a location during the raids conducted against liquor businessmen, distribution companies and linked entities, sources said.

Some digital devices and documents were also seized, they said without disclosing the locations of all the recoveries.

Premises linked to a director of a Delhi-based TV news organisation, who is also on the board of a Telugu daily, a city-based businessman whose company imports and distributes various alcoholic beverages and a former Punjab MLA were also searched by ED officials, they said.

The federal agency has conducted more than 103 raids in this case till now and last month arrested Sameer Mahandru, a liquor businessman and managing director of liquor manufacturing company-Indospirit.

The money laundering case stems from a CBI FIR that had named Delhi Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia as an accused among others.

The scheme came under the scanner after Delhi Lieutenant Governor VK Saxena recommended a CBI probe into the alleged irregularities in the implementation of Delhi’s Excise Policy 2021-22.

He had also suspended 11 excise officials in the matter.

The ED has questioned AAP MLA Durgesh Pathak and minister Satyendar Jain, who is lodged in Tihar Jail, while the CBI questioned a number of people and arrested businessman, Vijay Nair.

The CBI inquiry was recommended on the findings of the Delhi chief secretary’s report filed in July showing prima facie violations of the Government of National Capital Territory of Delhi (GNCTD) Act 1991, Transaction of Business Rules (ToBR)-1993, Delhi Excise Act-2009, and Delhi Excise Rules-2010, officials said.