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Swati Maliwal ‘assault’ case: Police register FIR; Kejriwal’s aide named as accused

Bibhav Kumar, the personal assistant of Kejriwal, has been named as an accused in the case, officials said.

Screenshot 2024 05 17 090125NEW DELHI: The Delhi Police on Thursday registered an FIR in connection with the alleged assault on AAP MP Swati Maliwal by an aide of Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, even as the BJP hit out at the AAP supremo for maintaining silence over the incident.

Bibhav Kumar, the personal assistant of Kejriwal, has been named as an accused in the case, officials said.

He has also been summoned by the National Commission for Women (NCW) on Friday over the matter.

The FIR was registered after Maliwal’s statement was recorded by a two-member team, led by Additional Commissioner of Police P S Kushwaha.

It was at the Rajya Sabha member’s residence in Central Delhi for nearly four and a half hours.

Officials said the FIR has been registered under Indian Penal Code sections pertaining to violence against a woman.

The development comes two days after Maliwal went to the Civil Lines police station and alleged that a member of Chief Minister and Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) national convener Kejriwal’s personal staff “assaulted” her at the CM’s official residence.

In a post on X after the police team left her residence, Maliwal said she has recorded her statement with the Delhi Police on what happened with her and urged the BJP to not indulge in politics.

“Hope appropriate action is taken. Whatever happened with me was extremely bad,” said the MP.

She also said, “The past days have been very difficult for me. I thank those who prayed. Those who tried to indulge in character assassination, said that I was doing it at the behest of the other party, God bless them too.”

According to sources, in her police complaint, Maliwal has named Kumar as the “main person” who allegedly assaulted her when she had gone to meet Kejriwal on Monday.

The BJP attacked Kejriwal after he refused to comment on the Maliwal “assault” matter during a press conference in Lucknow.

He was flanked by Samajwadi Party (SP) chief Akhilesh Yadav and AAP Rajya Sabha member Sanjay Singh.

Kejriwal avoided a question on the issue and it was fielded by Singh who said his party has already made its stand clear on the issue.

On Tuesday, at a press conference in Delhi, Singh had accepted that Kumar had “misbehaved” with Maliwal.

When Kejriwal was avoiding the question, Yadav took the microphone and said, “There are more important things than that”.

He then unfolded a piece of paper and said, “BJP people are not with anyone, it is a ‘gang’ that lodges false cases”.

Singh then took the microphone from the SP chief, and said the BJP and Prime Minister Narendra Modi should answer for atrocities against women during the party’s rule.

BJP national spokesperson Gaurav Bhatia claimed that Kejriwal is the main “criminal” in the complaint that his aide Kumar had physically attacked Maliwal at the chief minister’s residence, as he cited the telephone call she had made to the Delhi Police to report the matter.

“His (Kejriwal) silence speaks a lot. Out of jail, he is more a ‘goonda’ than a chief minister,” he told reporters, noting that Kumar was seen with the chief minister in Lucknow.

Stringent action should be taken against the accused in the case, he said.

Kumar, he noted, was photographed with Kejriwal during his visit to Lucknow.

During the press conference in the Uttar Pradesh capital, Singh, who had met Maliwal at her residence on Wednesday, said, “The AAP is our family. Party has made its view clear.”

He also targeted the BJP government at the Centre by raising the issue of a Manipuri woman being paraded naked, the Prajwal Revanna sex scandal and Maliwal being “beaten up” by police during protests by wrestlers when she was the Delhi Commission for Women (DCW) chief.

“I want that BJP and PM should also answer on the issues I have kept before you. He (PM) should answer on the issue of Swati Maliwal, who was dragged and beaten when she went to seek justice for the female wrestlers. I just want to say don’t play political games on the issues,” he said.

The NCW summoned Kumar after taking suo moto cognisance of a media post titled “Ex-DCW chief Swati Maliwal accuses Arvind Kejriwal’s personal secretary of assaulting her”, where she claimed that she was brutally assaulted at the chief minister’s residence by Kumar.

In light of these accusations, the commission issued a notice, emphasising that failure to comply could result in further actions as deemed necessary by them.

Reacting to the incident, the Congress said strict action should be taken against the person who was involved in the alleged assault on Maliwal.

The Congress and the Aam Aadmi Party are fighting the Lok Sabha elections under the banner of INDIA bloc in the national capital.

Congress spokesperson Ragini Nayak said the party’s stand in the matter has been absolutely clear.

“If any crime takes place against a woman, whoever is involved in the crime, whether he belongs to any political party or not, strictest action should be taken against him. (AAP MP) Sanjay Singh also said the same thing and the Congress also said the same,” Nayak said.

The Mahila Morcha of the Delhi BJP also extended support to Maliwal, writing a letter to her saying the incident was a matter of honour of women in the country.

The letter written by its president Richa Pandey Mishra, a former AAP leader, urged Maliwal to approach police to ensure that strict action be taken against the guilty.

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