Delhi Police Registers FIR on Allegations of Misbehaviour and Assault Against Delhi CM’s Aide

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New Delhi, May 18, 2024 – The Delhi Police on Thursday registered a First Information Report (FIR) following a formal complaint submitted by Rajya Sabha MP Swati Maliwal. Maliwal has accused a close aide of Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal of misbehaviour and assault.

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The FIR includes charges under various sections of the Indian Penal Code: Section 354 (outraging the modesty of a woman), Section 506 (criminal intimidation), Section 509 (words, gestures, or acts intended to insult the modesty of a woman), and Section 323 (voluntarily causing hurt). A two-member team from the Delhi Police recorded Maliwal’s statement at her residence in central Delhi.

According to the police, Maliwal recounted an incident that took place at the Chief Minister’s residence on May 13. Sources revealed that Maliwal submitted a detailed two-and-a-half-page statement outlining the sequence of events. She named Bibhav Kumar, a personal staff member of Chief Minister Kejriwal, as the accused. The police team, led by Additional Commissioner of Police PS Kushwaha, arrived at Maliwal’s house around 1:50 PM and stayed for over four hours to gather details about the alleged assault. Kushwaha was accompanied by a woman police officer to ensure the sensitive nature of the investigation was handled appropriately.

Earlier in the day, the National Commission for Women (NCW) took notice of the allegations and summoned Bibhav Kumar for a hearing scheduled for Friday at 11 AM. This step by the NCW underscores the gravity of the allegations and the urgency with which they are being addressed. Senior Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leader Sanjay Singh condemned the incident, calling it “highly condemnable.” He emphasized the party’s stance against such behaviour and stressed the importance of a thorough investigation.

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Delhi Police Registers FIR on Allegations of Misbehaviour and Assault Against Delhi CM’s Aide 14

However, the controversy has sparked a political firestorm. Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman criticized Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal for his silence on the matter. “It is shocking that Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal has not spoken a word about his party MP Swati Maliwal who was misbehaved with and beaten up in the CM’s residence. The CM has not acted, responded, or spoken about it,” Sitharaman told the media in Kolkata.

Adding to the controversy, Bibhav Kumar, the accused, was seen with Chief Minister Kejriwal at Lucknow airport on Wednesday, prompting further criticism from political opponents. Sitharaman questioned the propriety of Kumar accompanying the Chief Minister amid such serious allegations.

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Delhi Police Registers FIR on Allegations of Misbehaviour and Assault Against Delhi CM’s Aide 15

Swati Maliwal, a prominent figure and a Rajya Sabha MP representing the AAP, reported that the alleged incident took place during a meeting at the Chief Minister’s residence. Maliwal’s complaint, detailed in her two-and-a-half-page statement, outlines how the situation escalated, leading to the alleged misbehaviour and assault by Bibhav Kumar.

The Delhi Police’s prompt action in registering the FIR and visiting Maliwal’s residence signifies the seriousness with which they are treating the allegations. The inclusion of a woman police officer in the investigative team highlights the sensitivity and gender dynamics involved in the case.

The incident has triggered a wave of reactions from various political quarters. The National Commission for Women’s involvement reflects the broader concern about the treatment of women in political spaces. Their swift action in summoning the accused demonstrates their commitment to addressing issues of gender-based violence and harassment.

Within the AAP, there is a clear divide between the need to support their party member, Swati Maliwal, and the implications of the allegations against a close aide of the Chief Minister. Sanjay Singh’s condemnation indicates the party’s official stance against such actions, but the presence of Bibhav Kumar with Kejriwal suggests a complex internal dynamic. Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman’s remarks highlight the political ramifications of the incident. Her critique of Kejriwal’s silence and the visible association of the accused with the Chief Minister suggest a potential impact on the public perception of the AAP’s leadership and its handling of internal conflicts.

This incident has significant implications for the AAP, especially in terms of its public image and the internal dynamics of the party. The manner in which the party and its leadership handle the allegations and the ongoing investigation will be closely watched by the public and political analysts alike. For Swati Maliwal, this situation presents a critical moment in her political career. Her decision to come forward and file a formal complaint against a high-ranking aide within her own party highlights issues of gender dynamics and power structures in Indian politics.

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The ongoing investigation by the Delhi Police, coupled with the NCW’s involvement, suggests that there will be continuous developments in this case. The scheduled hearing for Bibhav Kumar and the potential responses from the AAP leadership will play a crucial role in shaping the narrative and outcome of this controversy.

As the situation unfolds, it remains to be seen how the allegations will impact the broader political landscape in Delhi and the functioning of the AAP. The incident underscores the importance of addressing issues of misconduct and ensuring accountability, regardless of political affiliations or positions of power.

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