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Women’s rights champion Swati Maliwal silent after alleged thrashing of a woman MP in CM’s house? Former DCW chief owes answers to people

"As a former DCW chairman and now a Rajya Sabha MP, Maliwal would be aware of procedures that are followed after any distress calls regarding physical assaults are made. Top officials are treating the case with utmost concern and gravity," a Police official was quoted saying by Times Now.

On Monday (13th May), Swati Maliwal, the AAP Rajya Sabha MP and former Delhi Commission for Women (DCW) Chief accused Bibhav Kumar, the personal assistant of Arvind Kejriwal, of assaulting her inside the Chief Minister’s residence. However, even though 26 hours have passed since the AAP leader contacted Delhi PCR about the alleged assault incident, media reports citing sources have stated that she has ‘not come forward’ to file a complaint with the Delhi police regarding the alleged assault.

Sharing details about the initial complaint by Maliwal over a phone call, DCP of North M K Meena stated that they received a PCR (Police Control Room) call at 9.34 am from a woman who said she had been assaulted at the Delhi Chief Minister’s residence. 

The PCR call report received by the MP read, “I am a lady calling from the Chief Minister’s official residence. His PA has beaten me up badly on his saying.” However, she has not filed any official complaint as of yet. 

The DCP told reporters, “After some time, MP madam (Swati Maliwal) came to the police station. However, she left stating she will give a complaint later.” According to sources, she said she is not in good condition then and hence, would file the complaint later. 

Another officer confirmed that the alleged woman victim was Swati Maliwal. The officer said that the call was from Maliwal’s mobile number adding that she was the one on the other side of the line.

Internal rift in Aam Aadmi Party over Rajya Sabha berth and Maliwal’s political inactions?

Although the AAP Rajya Sabha MP Swati Maliwal has not filed an official complaint in this matter, the Daily Pioneer, citing sources, reported that the Aam Aadmi Party and its senior leaders, including party supremo Arvind Kejriwal, have been annoyed with her. It is being said that things have gone against her in the party because she didn’t come out publicly to support the party when its Chief Arvind Kejriwal was sent behind bars or participated in a protest against the AAP Supremo’s arrest.

It is further reported that she didn’t make at least a courtesy visit when Kejriwal was in jail facing a probe in the Delhi Liquor Policy scam case. Senior party leaders Manish Sisodia, and Satyender Jain are still in jail in the same case while the party’s Rajya Sabha member Sanjay Singh is out on bail. 

As per reports, Swati Maliwal had recently stayed in America for several days and she didn’t take to the streets to participate in protests against Kejriwal’s arrest.  

The report citing sources also added that the rift between Maliwal and the party has been widening further over the issue of Rajya Sabha berth. Reportedly, she is being forced by the party to resign from the Rajya Sabha as the party leadership is mulling over giving her Rajya Sabha seat to a top lawyer helping Kejriwal and others in the case, an apparent reference to Abhishek Manu Singhvi.

Women’s rights champion, Swati Maliwal, is incommunicado and has not taken any steps to lodge a formal complaint after calling police

After receiving the initial complaint over the phone, a team from the Civil Lines police station reached the Chief Minister’s residence to probe her allegations. The SHO met Maliwal there and she told him she would soon be going to the police station, the officer said. Maliwal went to the police station at 10 am.

The officer said, “In the police station, she was informed that a medical examination is necessary to file an assault FIR. She was at the police station for five minutes and left without filing any formal complaint. She said she would be back later.” 

According to an official, she also cried at the police station. Officials have noted that Maliwal who has been DCW Chairperson for nine years must be aware of the procedures that are needed to be followed in such serious cases. 

“As a former DCW chairman and now a Rajya Sabha MP, Maliwal would be aware of procedures that are followed after any distress calls regarding physical assaults are made. Top officials are treating the case with utmost concern and gravity,” a Police official was quoted saying by Times Now.

Delhi Police officials need her signature on the complaint copy to begin their investigation. The official said, “We can’t begin the investigation without a signed complaint copy of the honorable MP.” 

The official noted that so far neither Swati Maliwal nor the Chief Minister’s Office nor Kejriwal’s Personal Secretary have formally approached the area police.

Incidentally, when Swati Maliwal was the DCW Chairperson, she had actively demanded prompt action on the complaints of the victims in cases of crime against girls/women and had visited the residence of the victim to extend her support. 

Evidently, in August 2023, NCPCR Chief Priyank Kanoongo had slammed her for pressing to meet the family of the minor victim who was allegedly raped by a Delhi government official for several months. Kanoongo lambasted her claiming that it is nothing but a shameful act of using an unfortunate case to gain limelight.  

In May 2023, she met the family of a teenager who was stabbed to death in public near Shahbad dairy, she demanded a death sentence for the murderer in six months.

In cases outside the territory of India, she had written a letter to Foreign Minister S Jaishankar on the occasion of Raksha Bandhan in August 2022 seeking justice for an Indian-origin woman Mandeep Kaur who died by suicide in New York. The DCW chief had also demanded that the Ministry ensure the safety of Indian women living abroad.

Maliwal, who was known for promptly responding to crime scenes and advocating for swift action in cases of violence against women, has often courted controversy for allegedly seeking media attention. However, in her own case, after initially reporting being assaulted inside the Delhi Chief Minister’s residence, she has maintained an unusual silence.  

As an MP and as a vocal women’s rights advocate, the former DCW chief needs to clarify what happened on May 13 and cooperate with law enforcement authorities to take the case to its legal end.

Ayodhra Ram Mandir special coverage by OpIndia

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OpIndia Staff
OpIndia Staff
Staff reporter at OpIndia

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