Kejriwal should apologise on Maliwal issue: Nirmala Sitharaman

Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman arrives at the Parliament House complex to present the Interim Budget 2024, in New Delhi. Photo: PTI.

New Delhi: Union minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Friday slammed Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal for not speaking on the issue of an alleged attack on his party MP Swati Maliwal, and said he is instead "shamelessly" moving around with accused Bibhav Kumar. Addressing a press conference at the BJP headquarters, Sitharaman demanded that the AAP convener speak on the issue and apologise.

The senior BJP leader cited charges of attack on women against several AAP leaders, including its New Delhi Lok Sabha candidate Somnath Bharti, to claim that it is an anti-women party. Taking a swipe at the Congress, the Finance Minister said the Gandhi family members would be voting for Bharti, who was accused of assaulting his pregnant wife.

A day after AAP MP Sanjay Singh promised action in the Maliwal case, accused Bibhav Kumar was seen with Kejriwal in Lucknow, she noted. It is unbelievable and unacceptable that Kejriwal has not spoken a word on the attack on his party woman MP, she said.
Maliwal has alleged that a member of Kejriwal's personal staff "assaulted" her at the chief minister's official residence. The Delhi Police on Thursday registered an FIR in the matter and named Kumar as an accused in the case.

Bibhav Kumar fails to appear before NCW
New Delhi: Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal's aide Bibhav Kumar did not appear before the National Commission for Women (NCW) on Friday in connection with alleged assault on AAP Rajya Sabha MP Swati Maliwal. The NCW had summoned Kumar to appear before it at 11 am.
NCW chief Rekha Sharma said a team of the commission had gone to Kumar's residence on Thursday to serve him notice but he was not home. "Kumar's wife refused to receive the notice. My team has gone to his residence again today with police and if he does not appear (before NCW) by tomorrow, then we will go personally to inquire," Sharma told reporters. On Monday morning, Maliwal went to the Civil Lines police station here and alleged that a member of Kejriwal's personal staff "assaulted" her at the chief minister's official residence, police officials said.

The NCW took suo moto cognizance 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.

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