Excise Policy Case: Sisodia’s Close Aide Vijay Nair Sent To 5-Day CBI Custody

Vijay Nair, a close aide of Delhi Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia, was on Wednesday sent to Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) custody for five days in the now-scrapped Delhi Excise Policy case 2021-22. 

NEW DELHI | Updated: 28 September, 2022 7:04 pm IST
AAP's communications in-charge Vijay Nair

Vijay Nair, a close aide of Delhi Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia, was on Wednesday sent to Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) custody for five days in the now-scrapped Delhi Excise Policy case 2021-22.

The central probe agency had arrested him on Tuesday evening in connection with the alleged irregularities in the excise policy.

Nair, who is also the media coordinator of the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP), was produced before a Special CBI court here. In the court, the CBI said notice was given to Nair to submit his phone. “Yesterday, two phones were seized, and during the probe, it was seen that these phones have been formatted,” the CBI informed the court.

The CBI also told the court that yesterday (Tuesday), Nair was arrested for not cooperating in the investigation. “Probe is at a crucial stage. It’s a high-profile case involving high-profile people like Manish Sisodia,” the CBI told the court.

The CBI also told the court that Nair formatted mobile phones, making it difficult to procure all the data. He was using a highly encrypted Signal app.

ALSO READ: Delhi Excise Policy Case: CBI Arrests Close Associate Of Manish Sisodia

Senior Advocate Rebecca John, while appearing for Nair, told the court that on August 17, an FIR was registered. Nair came back to India on August 28.

“Upon arrival, his phones were seized. On August 29, he went to CBI office at 10 am and gave them his bank account details. A total of five phones were seized. Two on arrival from London, two during home search and one on September 12 when I (Nair) appeared,” John told the court on behalf of Nair.

“I (Nair) have told CBI that the two formatted phones were given by me to my friends in London as gifts. Thereafter, I asked for my friends to return those phones as CBI asked for them. Obviously, they were formatted by my friends, as they were using them for themselves,” John told the court on Nair’s behalf.

“The arrest memo was served on me (Nair) yesterday. I have repeatedly joined investigation when they have called me.”

John further argued that he (Nair) has “virtually been in their custody” for three weeks. His counsel also said that Nair is media coordinator and he only deals with media output.

The court then took a break. After almost an hour, the special court judge sent Nair to five days in CBI custody.

The CBI carried out searches on August 19 at 31 locations, including the premises of Sisodia, who has been named as accused number one in the case.

Earlier, the CBI on August 21 issued a Look Out Circular (LOC) against eight private persons named as accused in the Delhi liquor policy scam case. This included businessman Nair, who the probe agency said was missing during the raids it conducted on August 19.

According to the CBI’s FIR in the case, Sisodia’s associate Arjun Pandey had once collected cash of about Rs 2 to 4 crore from Sameer Mahendru, owner of Indospirits, on behalf of Nair. Nair allegedly gave the funds to the accused public servants in the case.

ALSO READ: Sisodia Claims CBI Officer Was Driven To Suicide

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