New Delhi: Arvind Kejriwal on Thursday returned over Rs 9 lakh in dues to settle the issue of his resignation from the IRS, insisting that he was doing so in protest and it does not mean he has accepted any mistake.

Kejriwal sent a cheque of Rs 9,27,787 along with a letter to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, asking him not to "trouble" his six friends, including Magsaysay winner Harish Hande, who had given him an interest-free loan to settle his dues.

The 43-year-old activist's decision to settle the dues is seen as an attempt by the Team Anna member to blunt attacks from detractors.

Government has claimed that he had violated bond rules by quitting the service before completing three years of service after going on a study leave on full pay. However, Kejriwal said he took non-paid leave and quit the service after serving bond conditions.

In his letter to Singh, he said, "I am enclosing a cheque for Rs 9,27,787. This does not mean that I have accepted the mistake.

When I don't know what was the mistake I committed, then there is no question of accepting it.

"I am returning the dues in protest. I appeal to you to instruct the Finance Ministry to accept my resignation. Once my resignation is accepted, I retain my right to approach the court to reclaim the dues," he said in the four-page letter.

Claiming that he did not have any savings and he took loans from six of his friends to pay dues, he said many people offered him the money but he did not take it as it may be construed as "misusing" the anti-corruption movement.

"That is why I took loan from only those people whom I know for years. The whole government machinery is after Team Anna. I appeal to you with folded hands that your government should not trouble those people who have given me loan," he said.

(Agencies)