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Vijay Nair 'Key Planner', Dinesh Arora 'Handled Kickbacks': A List of Who's Who in Delhi Liquorgate

Curated By: Sumedha Kirti


Last Updated: March 10, 2023, 15:20 IST

New Delhi, India

The three main faces of Delhi Liquor Policy Scam: Vijay Nair, Arun Pillai, Dinesh Arora. (File Photo)

The three main faces of Delhi Liquor Policy Scam: Vijay Nair, Arun Pillai, Dinesh Arora. (File Photo)

The ED told court that Sisodia's aide Vijay Nair 'coordinated the whole conspiracy', while Dinesh Arora was coordinating kickbacks

As a Delhi court heard former Delhi deputy chief minister Manish Sisodia’s bail plea, the Enforcement Directorate (ED) mentioned a few names to establish the link between the Arvind Kejriwal-led government and Telangana chief minister Chandrashekar Rao’s daughter K Kavitha in the liquor policy scam.

The ED told court that Sisodia‘s aide Vijay Nair “coordinated the whole conspiracy", while Dinesh Arora was coordinating kickbacks. The ED said that Arora got a call from AAP leader Sanjay Singh that he shall seek funds from various restaurants as elections were approaching.

The agency also read out a statement by former auditor of BRS MLC Kavitha, Gorantla Buchibabu. “He has disclosed that there was a political understanding between Sisodia and KCR’s daughter. She also met Vijay Nair," the statement read.

Earlier on Friday, K Kavitha’s close aide Arun Pillai moved an application before Delhi’s Rouse Avenue Court seeking to retract his statements given to the Enforcement Directorate.

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The court has issued a notice to the ED over plea filed by Pillai, who alleged that the statements were recorded under force. The matter has been listed for hearing on Monday, March 13.

Here’s All About the Top Names in Delhi Liquor Policy Scam

Vijay Nair: He is the former chief executive officer (CEO) of Mumbai-based Only Much Louder (OML), an entertainment and event management company.

Nair, who had started Only Much Louder as a management company for indie bands, later shifted focus toward the comedy industry and live music concerts. According to a report in The Quint, OML was popular for its NH7 Weekender concerts, which have become synonymous with indie music in India.

The company also promoted comedy collectives such as East India Comedy and All India Bakchod, The Quint reported.

Nair is also linked with companies including Babblefish and Motherswear. According to a report in Economic Times, in 2014, Nair was at the helm of a business that had an estimated worth of $10 million.

Dinesh Arora: He is a well-known name in the food industry in Delhi. Arora is associated with the industry since 2009. According to reports, he opened his first cafe in Delhi’s Hauz Khas area in 2009. His Instagram profile states that he is also the managing director of Chica Delhi, Unplugged Courtyard and La Roca Aerocity.

According to CBI, Dinesh Arora is the director of Radha Industries. Apart from this, Arora is also a committee member of the National Restaurant Association of India (NRAI).

In July 2018, Arora also started Eastman Color Restaurant Private Limited Company. According to the NRAI website, at present Dinesh Arora has restaurants in all major markets of Delhi. An accused in the Delhi liquor policy case, he became a government approver last year.

Gorantla Buchibabu: He is a Hyderabad-based chartered accountant, who is a part of ‘South Group’ that comprise YSRCP Ongole MP Magunta Srinivasulu Reddy (MSR), his son Magunta Raghava Reddy, and BRS MLC K Kavitha.

This group was represented by Buchibabu along with Hyderabad businessman Abhishek Boinpally and leading pharma company director P Sarath Candra Reddy.

“Businessman Sameer Mahendru, in collusion with others, formed a cartel of retailer-wholesaler-manufacturer with Pernod Ricard, Benoy Babu, Vijay Nair, representative of AAP, Arun Pillai, K Kavitha, Magunta Srinivasulu Reddy (MSR), his son Raghav, Sarath Reddy, Abhishek Boinpally and Buchi Babu,” the ED alleged, adding that the ‘south group’ was represented by Arun Pillai, Abhishek Boinpally and Buchibabu.

Arun Pillai: He’s also a part of ‘south group’ that allegedly sent ‘kickbacks’ worth Rs 100 crore to the Aam Admi Party (AAP) leaders. According to the ED, Pillai is a frontman of a south-based liquor manufacturer group, Indospirits. He was given a 32.5% share of the company.

According to the ED, out of Rs 68 crore profit that Indospirits allegedly earned through cartelisation, ₹29 crore was tranferred to Pillai’s accounts. ED found during probe that Pillai made a payment of Rs 4.75 crore to a TV channel owner and another ₹3.85 crore to Abhishek Boinpally, one of the other accused who was arrested in the case.

He was found to have floated Robin Distilleries Pvt. Ltd. and Robin Distribution LLP whose address was allegedly associated with that of a beauty parlour owned by relatives of TRS MLC Kavitha Kalvakuntla.

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first published:March 10, 2023, 14:58 IST
last updated:March 10, 2023, 15:20 IST