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BJP questions authenticity of Kejriwal’s directive; can govern from custody, say experts

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New Delhi, March 24 : Amidst the ongoing controversy surrounding Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, currently under the Enforcement Directorate’s (ED) custody, Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) MP Manoj Tiwari raised questions about the legitimacy of an order purportedly issued by Kejriwal to address water and sewage issues in the city.

Tiwari cast doubt on the authenticity of the directive allegedly sent by Kejriwal to Atishi, questioning the timing of its issuance. “Today, a narrative was constructed regarding a detainee under ED custody, following a lack of backing for Arvind Kejriwal,” Tiwari said in a statement on Sunday.

Highlighting the dire conditions prevailing in Delhi, Tiwari emphasised the urgency of addressing the pressing issues faced by its residents. “If you wish to witness the state of Delhi, simply observe its streets. The drains overflow with contaminated water, seeping onto the streets and infiltrating households, resulting in tainted drinking water,” he said, underscoring the gravity of the situation.

Tiwari further conveyed a sentiment of disillusionment among the populace, asserting, “Now, Delhi will not listen to your script. Delhi people have lost trust in you.”

In response to queries regarding Kejriwal’s order, ED officials declined to comment on the matter.

According to experts, Kejriwal as Chief Minister can run his government from jail or custody.

“He can hold meetings of the cabinet and sign files by taking prior approval from the court as per the jail manual. However in custody, such orders are approved by concerned officers before sending them,” Supreme Court lawyer Vineet Jindal told IANS.

“However, it is questionable how the communication took place. Whether it was allowed by the ED officials or not, there is no clarity,” said Jindal.

Advocate Rudra Vikram Singh said that as the Chief Minister is only an accused at this stage hence he can’t be barred from running the government from inside the custody.

“Some specific time may be allowed to him to do all these works,” he said.

Kejriwal, who was arrested on Thursday and subsequently remanded to ED custody until March 28 by a Delhi court, faces allegations of direct involvement in a conspiracy related to the formulation of excise policy favouring specific individuals.

Kejriwal is also accused of soliciting kickbacks from liquor businessmen in exchange for favours, as claimed by the probe agency.

The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leader has refuted the accusations levelled against him and has accused the BJP-led Central government of “manipulating investigative agencies for political motives”.

The ED has said that Kejriwal is the “kingpin and key conspirator” in the now-scrapped excise policy in collusion with AAP ministers, leaders and other persons.(IANS)

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