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AAP MLA Akhilesh Pati Tripathi likely to join ACB probe today

Led by senior officials, the probe team is set to confront the Model Town MLA with testimonies and digital evidence.

IANS | New Delhi |

AAP MLA Akhilesh Pati Tripathi is likely to appear before the Anti Corruption Bureau (ACB) of Delhi by 11 a.m. on Thursday in connection with the MCD ticket selling issue, officials said here.

Led by senior officials, the probe team is set to confront the Model Town MLA with testimonies and digital evidence.

On Wednesday, the ACB had arrested Tripathi’s brother-in-law Om Singh, his associate Shiv Shankar Pandey alias Vishal Pandey, and one Prince Raghuvanshi for allegedly selling MCD ticket for Kamla Nagar Ward (No 69) for Rs 90 lakh.

They were placed under arrest under section 7/13 of POC Act and 171 (E) of IPC.

“The accused were arrested for accepting bribe for giving AAP ticket of MCD election to Shobha Khari, wife of the complainant Gopal Khari, for Ward No. 69, Kamla Nagar,” said Madhur Verma, the DCP ACB.

Since the complainant has named him, the MLA has been summoned to join the pobe.

Complainant Gopal Khari, a resident of Kamla Nagar, had approached the ACB on November 14 with the grievance that he was associated with AAP as an active worker since 2014 and on November 9, he met Tripathi with the request to secure councillor’s ticket for his wife Shobha Khari.

The complainant further stated that Tripathi demanded a bribe of Rs 90 lakh for the same.

“Khari paid a bribe amount of Rs 35 lakh to Tripathi and Rs 20 lakh to Rajesh Gupta (MLA Wazirpur), at his instance. Khari assured Tripathi that the remaining 35 lakh will be paid by him after getting the ticket. On November 12, Khari did not find the name of his wife in the list of contesting councillors released by the party.

“Thereafter, Om Singh contacted the complainant and assured him that the ticket will be given to him in the next elections. He also offered to return his money (bribe amount). Khari also submitted audio and video recordings of his alleged dealings during payment and return of the bribe amount,” said the ACB official.

After receiving the complaint, the ACB formed a team of its elite officials to nab the accused. On the intervening night of November 15 and 16, they laid a trap at the residence of Khari and caught Singh and his associates — Pandey and Raghuvanshi — red-handed in the presence of independent witnesses. They had gone to return the bribe amount of Rs 33 lakh out of total 35 lakh received on behalf of Tripathi.

“The bribe amount of Rs 33 lakh has been seized. Further investigation of the case is on,” said the official.