#MeToo: Union min MJ Akbar files defamation case against Priya Ramani
#MeToo: Union min MJ Akbar files defamation case against Priya Ramani
Union Minister MJ Akbar 'sends resignation' through Email: Sources
16 October, 2018, 01:06
"The past two weeks have seen an upheaval, with several women from different professions, including journalists, making serious allegations of sexual harassment at the workplace and instances of sexual misconduct against various editors, writers, film-makers and others". He called the allegations false, fabricated, wild and baseless, and "spiced up by innuendo".
"Why has this storm risen a few months before a general election?".
Akbar is minister of state for external affairs and allegations against him have become an embarrassment with questions being asked in foreign capitals, a source associated with the BJP's foreign affairs cell said. Akbar's first stint with politics was in 1989 when he won a Lok Sabha seat from Kishanganj, Bihar on a Congress ticket. There is a second, more specific line in his attempted defence - one that suggests that the gravamen of the charges is vague and unsubstantiated. Ramani, along with over 10 other women, had accused Akbar of sexual harassment.
"Mr Akbar's conspiracy theory that the #MeToo charges have settled upon him because elections are now looming is weak and totally unconvincing". Admitting that she was a fan of Akbar's journalism, Ramani wrote, "It was more date, less interview".
"The complainant has received a number of calls from his friends and colleagues, both from the media as well as the political sphere, inquiring about the allegations put forth in the false and defamatory statements of the Accused, thereby causing irreparable loss to his reputation", the plea said. Come sit here, you said at one point, gesturing to a tiny space near you.
The advocate said that woman journalist had mentioned incidents which allegedly occurred 20 years ago and she had simultaneously admitted that Akbar had not done anything to her.
The 67-year-old Akbar threatened legal action against his accusers Sunday on his return from a trip to Nigeria, while Prime Minister Narendra Modi's government remained silent.
Harinder Baweja, another woman who named Akbar as her abuser, tweeted his argument is "insane".
Following Wahab's account, women took to Twitter and exposed accounts of his misbehaviour and sexual misconduct across newsrooms and hotels.
As the #MeToo campaign gained momentum, some women journalists accused Akbar of sexually harassing them when he was the editor in newspapers.
New York-based journalist Majlie de Puy Kamp told the news website Huffington Post India that Akbar had "violated my boundaries" in 2007, when she was a teenage intern at the Asian Age in New Delhi.
Ms Wahab had claimed in her piece on social media that she was just a small-town girl, that this was her first job, that she did not know how to react to his unsolicited advances, and that she was anxious that her conservative parents would have stopped her from working if they had got to know about this.
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