Have passed all tests, answered every question: Manish Sisodia

Bank lockers of Deputy CM, wife searched by CBI; BJP cites CVC report, alleges graft

August 31, 2022 01:21 am | Updated September 01, 2022 11:30 am IST - New Delhi:

Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia at the Assembly on Tuesday.

Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia at the Assembly on Tuesday. | Photo Credit: SUSHIL KUMAR VERMA

Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia, who is under the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) lens for alleged corruption in Delhi Excise Policy 2021-22, declared on Tuesday that he had received “a clean chit” from the investigation agency.

A CBI team had, earlier during the day, searched lockers belonging to Mr. Sisodia and his wife, following which the Deputy CM declared that the investigators had left “empty-handed”.

He said he had “answered every single question” posed by the BJP in addition to having “passed every test”.

‘Clean chit’

“When the CBI officials did not get anything from my house, they checked my bank locker where they found valuables worth ₹70,000-₹80,000 in total and gave me a clean chit. There is pressure on them from the PM to arrest me,” he alleged. His claim was endorsed by Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal.

“Nothing was found at Manish’s house or from his locker. Nothing came out in the CBI investigation. Manish’s honesty and patriotism were again proved in front of the whole country. It is clear that all of this is motivated by dirty politics. I hope they will now stop this dirty politics and let us do our work,” Mr. Kejriwal tweeted.

Speaking at the Delhi Assembly, the Deputy CM launched a counterattack against the BJP. “How on earth did the BJP manage to accumulate ₹6,300 crore for ‘Operation Lotus’ to buy MLAs and topple governments across the country?” Mr. Sisodia said. He also urged the CBI to probe “Lieutenant-Governor V.K. Saxena’s ₹1,400 crore money laundering scam”.

Also Read | How new excise policy turned into a political battleground in Delhi

The State Education Minister has also come under scrutiny following a recent direction by the L-G to the Chief Secretary to prepare a report over a two-year delay by the Delhi government’s Vigilance Department in taking action on a Central Vigilance Commission (CVC) report highlighting “gross irregularities” in the construction of additional classrooms in government schools.

Seeking to “correct the facts” regarding this report, Mr. Sisodia said that the State government had constructed 20,000 classrooms and was “extremely proud of this achievement”.

‘Diverting attention’

Following an overnight sit-protest at the Assembly demanding a discussion on the alleged excise policy scam, Leader of the Opposition Ramvir Singh Bidhuri accused Mr. Kejriwal of diverting the people’s attention. “Sometimes he accuses the L-G of embezzlement and sometimes he says that his MLAs are being bought by the BJP. Mr. Kejriwal himself likes to distribute certificates of integrity,” he said.

Weighing in on the CVC report, North East Delhi BJP MP Manoj Tiwari said, “A classroom which could have been built for ₹5 lakh was built for ₹33 lakh as per the report. Even toilets were counted as classrooms. This is a clear case of corruption by the Delhi government.”

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