Delhi minister and Aam Aadmi Party leader Saurabh Bhardwaj has said the denial of bail to Manish Sisodia and the subsequent Enforcement Directorate summons to Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal for questioning, are just ploys to "punish AAP politically".
"This is so that they can get rid of AAP politically," he told NDTV in an exclusive interview today.
Asked if the party has a Plan B in case of Mr Kejriwal's arrest, he said, "As of now, I don't know and I don't think there's any discussion about it. Kejriwal is our leader and we will work under his direction".
The Supreme Court order, he admitted, was a jolt for the party, "but in a way, it destroys the allegations of the Enforcement Directorate and the Central Bureau of Investigation".
Yesterday, the Supreme Court rejected the bail plea of Mr Sisodia, Delhi's former Deputy Chief Minister, who is the prime accused in the alleged liquor scam.
A money trail of Rs 338 crore has been tentatively established in the case, said the judges, who earlier insisted that a chain of evidence must be established.
In a 41-page order, the court accepted the CBI argument that there is a "carefully hatched conspiracy" to ensure that a select few make windfall gains. The policy "facilitated getting bribes" from wholesale distributors who are "assured of exorbitant profits".
Hours later, Mr Kejriwal was summoned for questioning by the Enforcement Directorate, which is probing the alleged money laundering angle in the liquor scam. He has been asked to present himself at the Delhi office of the Central agency on November 2.
The questioning of Mr Kejriwal was very much expected, Mr Bhardwaj said. "Two days back Manoj Tiwari said in an interview to ANI that next in line is Arvind Kejriwal and he will be arrested. I wonder how Manoj Tiwari knew that Kejriwal will be summoned? It makes me believe it is political script," he added.