Probing the alleged assault on Chief Secretary Anshu Prakash, a six-member team of the Delhi Police met Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia Friday, asking him over 100 questions.
Sisodia was questioned for more than three hours in a session that touched on the issue of advertisements for radio, the midnight meeting, and the alleged physical assault.
The alleged assault on Prakash had taken place on February 19, during a late-night meeting at the chief minister’s residence. Police had arrested two AAP MLAs, Amanatullah Khan and Prakash Jarwal, who were later released on bail. CM Arvind Kejriwal has already been questioned by police.
An officer involved in Sisodia’s questioning, who did not wish to be named, said that even though the Deputy CM answered their questions, he “chose to evade the question on the assault”. “When we asked him whether the physical assault took place, he chose to ignore us. Then he said, aisa nahi hota hai,” said a police source.
Sisodia had been sent a notice to join the probe on Wednesday, four days after Kejriwal was questioned for three hours at his home.
The deputy CM, replying to police, had said he would be joining the probe at 4.30 pm on Friday. In Sisodia’s case, too, Delhi Police videographed the entire session.
While police are learnt to have asked around 150 questions to Kejriwal, this time they asked around 120.
However, unlike in Kejriwal’s questioning, where he countered with replies citing the Prime Minister and UP CM Yogi Adityanath’s work routines, Sisodia kept his answers direct, officials said. “Some of his answers were satisfactory. But many of them were, at the same time, unsatisfactory,” said Additional Deputy Commissioner of Police (north) Harendra Singh.
Singh also informed that Sisodia may be called again for a second round of questioning — something the Deputy CM has agreed to in a statement.
The Delhi Police said that the core of their questions revolved around the procedure for conducting late-night meetings.
Police claimed that as per Prakash’s complaint, Sisodia had asked him to clear advertisements for radio, failing which he would be called to meet the CM.
Police sources said Sisodia claimed he does not recall making the phone call. When the police team asked about the procedure for such a meeting, he is learnt to have told investigators: “Ask the CM about the same as it would be in his knowledge.”
After questioning, Sisodia tweeted his response. Alleging that the questioning in the ‘fake’ case was a result of the popularity of the AAP government, he said, “Troubled by our action against them, the corrupt and dishonest, time and again, conspire against us. These powers, BJP and Congress are scared of our popularity… The corrupt want to pressure the good officers to stop them from working. The BJP government and the L-G have let loose the Delhi Police and several other agencies after Delhi government and Aam Aadmi Party… All these cases will be dismissed in court.”