On 13 May, a rather peculiar controversy hit the Aam Aadmi Party in Delhi. Its Rajya Sabha MP, Swati Maliwal, accused Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal’s aide, Bibhav Kumar, of assaulting her at the CM’s residence.

What followed was a series of allegations and counter allegations with both Maliwal and Kumar registering police complaints against each other as several parts of India voted in phase four of the ongoing Lok Sabha elections.

This story, however, is not about what was unfolding in Delhi. It’s about a housing society WhatsApp group — 1,400 km away — in Mumbai’s Mulund where Delhi politics, especially this episode, was being hotly discussed.

“On 18 May, I saw a message in our society’s WhatsApp group. It had a collage of images of journalists, lawyers, and civil society members, mostly critical of the government. The accompanying message questioned the silence of these journalists on the Swati Maliwal issue,” Raman*, a member of this WhatsApp group told The Quint.

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