Delhi excise scam case: Court extends BRS MLC K Kavitha’s judicial custody; CBI questions her in Tihar jail

Special judge for ED and CBI cases Kaveri Baweja extended Kavitha's custody till 23 April after she was produced before the court.

BySouth First Desk

Published Apr 09, 2024 | 5:36 PM Updated Apr 09, 2024 | 6:00 PM

K Kavitha. (File photo)

A court in New Delhi on Tuesday, 9 April, extended the judicial custody of BRS leader K Kavitha by two weeks in the Delhi excise policy-related money laundering case.

Special judge for Enforcement Directorate (ED) and CBI cases Kaveri Baweja extended Kavitha’s custody till 23 April after she was produced before the court on the expiry of her judicial remand granted earlier.

Meanwhile, the CBI questioned Kavitha in Tihar jail where she is lodged, officials said Tuesday.

The judge had on Monday denied interim bail to Kavitha, saying prima facie she not only destroyed evidence but was also instrumental in influencing witnesses and there is “every likelihood” of her continuing to do so in case the relief is granted.

Kavitha approached the court for interim bail, saying her 16-year-old son has exams and needs his mother’s “moral and emotional support”.

The ED opposed her petition, saying that the boy had the support of other members of the family.

It also claimed that Kavitha destroyed evidence and influenced witnesses in the case.

Also Read: Delhi court denies interim bail to BRS MLC K Kavitha in excise policy case

CBI questioning

The CBI was given permission by the special court to question her on the WhatsApp chats recovered from co-accused Butchibabu Gorantla’s phone and documents related to a land deal after which ₹100 crore was allegedly paid to the Aam Aadmi Party in kickbacks to swing excise policy in favour of a liquor lobby.

Gorantla, the former Chartered Accountant of Kavitha, had turned an approver in the case.

The agency officials had gone to Tihar Jail on Saturday where she was questioned on these aspects of the case, sources said.

The court’s permission was mandatory to question her in Tihar jail because she was in judicial custody.

The arrest

Kavitha (46) was arrested from her Banjara Hills residence in Hyderabad on 15 March.

She was arrested after Additional Solicitor General SV Raju told the Supreme Court that the ED was taking back its assurance not to arrest the BRS MLC.

After her arrest, Kavitha withdrew her petition from the Supreme Court.

In the petition, she had challenged the issue of summons to her to appear at the ED office since she was allowed certain privileges as she was a woman. With her arrest, the petition became infructuous.

The ED has accused Kavitha of being the kingpin of the so-called South Group, which allegedly paid ₹100 crore to AAP leaders to tweak the Delhi liquor policy to suit them.

The other members of the South Group, the ED said, were Sarath Chandra Reddy, Raghav Magunta, and MP Magunta Srinivasulu Reddy.

The ED accused Kavitha of working hand in glove with Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and former deputy chief minister Manish Sisodia, both arrested and jailed.

(With PTI inputs)