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Mallya Effect On CBI: Prez’s Nod Secured Before Filing FIR Against Sisodia

Looks like Prime Minister Narendra Modi has got the CBI to do a thorough job before proceeding against Delhi’s Deputy CM Manish Sisodia. Reportedly, the central agency secured prior mandatory approval of the President of India before filing a corruption case against Sisodia in connection with alleged irregularities in Delhi government’s excise policy 2021-22. Section 17A of the Prevention of Corruption Act requires Presidential assent to investigate a legislator in Union Territories. For excise officers, the Lieutenant Governor is the permitting authority. An FIR was filed against Sisodia on August 17 only after receiving the 17A sanction from the President’s office. Once the FIR was registered, the LoCs (look out circulars) were issued against all named 13 individuals, including Sisodia, so that immigration authorities are alerted in case anyone travels out of India. The CBI is taking precautionary steps because it doesn’t want a repeat of the March 2016 slip-up when former liquor baron Vijay Mallya fled the country for the UK. Since then the agency has started issuing LoCs against accused persons in almost all cases “as a precaution”. Meanwhile, the Congress seems to be the pumpkin in the CBI raid episode with party spokespersons speaking /acting differently. While on Day One Pawan Khera was questioning the CBI raid, next day Delhi Congress leaders were marching to AAP offices sensing mood in NCR against AAP over its liquor policy.