'Pay within 10 days': AAP gets Rs 163 crore refund notice for political ads
Arvind Kejriwal's Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) received a notice from Delhi's Department of Information and Publicity (DIP) on Thursday, January 12. The government (DIP) has violated the guidelines set by the Supreme Court while publishing/ televising public advertisements.
According to a report by news agency PTI, the DIP has demanded Rs 163.61 crore from the party within 10 days, "unless further legal action is taken in the matter.
What does the notice say?
In the recovery notice issued by the DIP, AAP is asked to repay Rs 99.31 crore by March 31, 2017. The remaining 6.31 million is the fine of this amount.
The Party office in Delhi and other properties may be sealed if AAP fails to pay.
In 2016, the Delhi High Court ordered the government's Commission for Regulation of Content in Advertisements (CCRGA) to look into complaints about AAP's political ads. Congress leader Ajay Maken's complaint to the CCRGA included copies of advertisements in newspapers, television channels and radio.
How did AAP respond?
Responding to DIP, AAP national secretary Pankaj Gupta in his letter called the notification "arbitrary, perverse and contrary to facts and law".
The party also accused the Lt Governor and the BJP of manhandling Delhi government officials to target Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal.
"The BJP is clearly misusing Delhi officials to target the city administration and ministers," Delhi Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia told reporters.
What is the BJP saying?
Responding to AAP's allegations, Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) MP Manoj Tiwari said AAP's bank accounts should be confiscated and assets of its leaders attached.
"BJP is demanding attachment of AAP bank account and recovery of money from bank accounts of AAP leaders who used money for their promotion," Tiwari said.