The Enforcement Directorate questioned jailed Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal’s former personal assistant, Bibhav Kumar, with sources not ruling out a possibility of making him a prosecution witness to ascertain facts on controversial liquor policy formulation in the PMLA case. Besides him, AAP MLA Durgesh Pathak, who is said to be close to Kejriwal, was also questioned by the ED on the Goa elections and the AAP functioning.

One of the issues, the ED, sources said, wants to know was Kejriwal’s engagements during the time of formulation of the excise policy 2021-22 which has since been scrapped.

Kumar like other suspected AAP leaders had changed his mobile phone to allegedly delete evidence from their instruments. As per an ED chargesheet filed in a court last year, the IMEI (International Mobile Equipment Identity) of Kumar’s mobile number changed four times from September 2021 to July 2022 – a period considered crucial since the Delhi excise policy was introduced in November of 2021 and scrapped in August of 2022.

Evidence Concealment

The ED has charged at least 36 accused, including former Delhi Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia and Kumar, who “destroyed, used or changed” 170 phones to conceal evidence of “kickbacks” worth thousands of crores of rupees in the liquor game. The ED had questioned Kumar in February 2023 also to find out Kejriwal’s functioning with regard to the excise case.

The ED after arresting Kejriwal on March 21, had also sought a password to his iPhone which he had refused on the ground that he would decide between seeking suggestions from his legal team. Later, the ED had sent a request to Apple to break open the Delhi CM’s phone but the US-based leading mobile phone manufacturing company is said to have turned down the agency’s request.

Meanwhile, Pathak, the AAP MLA from Rajinder Nagar constituency, is believed to have been grilled on the party’s 2021-22 campaign for the Goa assembly polls. The agency has charged that ₹45 crore out of the ₹100 crore kickback provided by the South Group in lieu of getting a large pie in Delhi liquor business were used to fund AAP’s Goa assembly polls.

The ED claims it has got WhatsApp chat messages and other evidences to allegedly show cash payments were made to vendors and individuals in electioneering and that it was managed by accused AAP leaders Vijay Nair, former party communication head, and Pathak.

Later, he told media that “Gradually they will summon all those who can create obstacles in their path.” On April 2, Delhi Minister Atishi had alleged that four more AAP leaders will be arrested in the next two months and one them she named was Pathak.