Barkha Singh, chairperson of the Delhi women’s commission on Wednesday accused the Aam Aadmi Party government of harassing her for summoning controversial Law Minister Somnath Bharti in connection with the south Delhi raid episode and refused to step down from the post.
A former Congress MLA, Singh had a public confrontation with Bharti's lawyers last week when they came to depose before the DCW on his behalf in the case of alleged harassment of a number of Ugandan women.
Singh, who had lost the assembly election from R K Puram, said she was holding a constitutional post and there was no need to resign from it though the Congress dispensation, which had appointed her, was defeated.
Earlier this month, Delhi Pradesh Congress Committee President Arvinder Singh Lovely had asked all party men to quit from various posts in government-run boards and commissions, following convention.
"It is a constitutional post and I still have one year and four months left in my tenure. The AAP government is harassing me and targeting me because I summoned Bharti in connection with the ill-treatment of Ugandan women during the midnight raid in Khirki Extension," Singh said.
When asked about the direction to party men to relinquish their posts in boards and commissions, the DPCC chief said he had withdrawn his directive.
A number of AAP leaders said in keeping with the tradition, Singh should have resigned after her party was ousted from power.
The DCW chairperson had summoned Bharti over allegations that he had led a group of supporters against some African women after claiming they were involved in a drug and prostitution racket. Bharti did not depose before the commission on January 24 as directed by it but sent his lawyers who were not allowed to put across their views by Singh.
"Those Ugandan women had come to me with their complaints and I did my duty. If they are removing me because I summoned the law ,inister, then it is totally wrong. It is an atrocity on me," Singh said.
The AAP, in a statement, had accused Singh of "politicisation" of the commission by its chairperson.
Dellhi govt suggests name of novelist for DWC chief's post
Meanwhile, the Delhi government has suggested the name of eminent Hindi novelist Maitreyi Pushpa as the new chief of Delhi women’s panel to Lt Governor Najeeb Jung.
"As per its promise to appoint a non-political, eminent personality as DCW chairperson, the government has proposed Maitreyi Pushpa's name to the Lt Governor," a government official said on Wednesday.
Sixty-nine-year-old Pushpa is a Hindi fiction writer and has 10 novels and seven short story collections to her credit.
Best known among her works are Chak, Alma Kabutari, Jhoola Nat and an autobiographical novel Kasturi Kundal Base.
According to her official website, she also writes for newspapers on current issues concerning women, and is known for her daring stance in her writings.
Pushpa was born in Sikurra village, Aligarh district. She spent her childhood in Khilli, another village in Bundelkhand near Jhansi and did her post graduation in Hindi from Bundelkhand College, Jhansi.
Image: Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal with Law Minister Somanth Bharti