Delhi Excise Policy: Court Extends Judicial Custody of K Kavitha till July 18

K Kavitha

Delhi’s Rouse Avenue Court on Friday extended the judicial custody of Bharat Rashtra Samithi (BRS) leader Kalvakuntla Kavitha in a Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) case related to the Delhi excise policy until July 18.

The BRS leader was produced via video conferencing from Tihar Jail.  The trial court is expected to review the charge sheet filed against her on July 6, 2024.

Special CBI Judge Kaveri Baweja extended Kavitha’s judicial custody for an additional 14 days. During the hearing, her counsel, Advocate P Mohit Rao, challenged the request for the extension of judicial custody.

The CBI has already filed a charge sheet against her, which is pending consideration on July 6. This charge sheet is the third supplementary one filed by the CBI in the Delhi Excise Policy case as of June 7.

CBI and ED Cases

K Kavitha is in judicial custody in both the CBI and money laundering cases. She was initially arrested by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) on March 15, followed by her arrest by the CBI on April 11. The ED has also filed a charge sheet against her in the Delhi Excise Policy money laundering case.

The CBI inquiry was prompted by the Delhi Chief Secretary’s report from July, which indicated prima facie violations of the GNCTD Act 1991, the Transaction of Business Rules (ToBR)-1993, the Delhi Excise Act-2009, and the Delhi Excise Rules-2010, according to officials.

Delhi Excise Scam

Both the ED and the CBI have alleged that irregularities occurred in the modification of the excise policy, including undue favors to license holders, waivers or reductions of license fees, and extensions of the L-1 license without proper authority. The beneficiaries reportedly diverted “illegal” gains to the accused officials and made false entries in their accounts to avoid detection.

Additionally, the Excise Department reportedly decided to refund approximately Rs 30 crore in earnest money deposits to a successful tenderer against established rules. Despite the lack of an enabling provision, a waiver on tendered license fees was granted from December 28, 2021, to January 27, 2022, due to COVID-19, leading to an alleged loss of Rs 144.36 crore to the exchequer.

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About the Author: Nunnem Gangte