Days after they claimed that no calls were made or received on Revenue Minister Eknath Khadse’s phone number from underworld don Dawood Ibrahim’s number, the Mumbai Police today said a probe into the matter is still on as some “new elements” have emerged in the case.
“Neither calls were made nor received at the said number of the Minister during period September 4, 2015 to April 5, 2016, that we spoke about. But after that we got some new elements into which our investigation is on,” Mumbai Police Commissioner Dattatray Padsalgikar told reporters on the sidelines of an event at a suburban police station.
Padsalgikar, however, declined to divulge any further information on these “new elements”.
He also parried questions on whether Khadse was given a ‘clean chit’ by the Mumbai police.
Aam Aadmi Party spokesperson Preeti Sharma Menon had last week alleged that Khadse had received several calls from Dawood’s wife Mehjabeen Shaikh’s number between September 4, 2015 and April 5, 2016.
Khadse had dismissed the allegations as “baseless”, stating that the particular number was not in use for the last one year.
Mumbai Joint Commissioner of Police (Crime) Atulchandra Kulkarni had on May 22 said initial analysis of the cell phone number (belonging to Khadse) indicated that there were neither outgoing nor incoming calls from the number to that of the fugitive (Dawood) during the entire period of September 2015 to April 2016, as claimed in the (Aam Aadmi Party’s) press conference.
Even Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis had come to his colleague’s rescue and termed the charge against Khadse as “unsubstantiated”.
Earlier, the AAP had sought a thorough probe into the matter as it expressed surprise over the speed at which Mumbai police virtually gave a clean chit to the minister.
“We trust Mumbai police but we are really surprised at the speed of the clean chit given to the minister Khadse. The charges are serious and deserve a through investigation,” AAP national spokesperson Preeti Sharma Menon had told PTI.