Delhi Police Tuesday registered a case against Delhi Commission for Women (DCW) chief Swati Maliwal and a journalist from a TV channel for allegedly revealing the identity of a 14-year-old Dalit rape victim. However, Maliwal claimed this was “vendetta” on part of Delhi Police, as the case was registered just two days after the Commission sent them a notice over the rape.
The teenager, who was raped multiple times and tortured, died in a city hospital Sunday. Last week, the DCW had sent a notice to the station house officer (SHO) of Burari police station, pointing out police inaction in the case. The victim’s name was mentioned in the notice.
A copy of the notice was shared by the DCW’s official WhatsApp group Saturday and aired on a television news bulletin. However, Maliwal had sent another message, clarifying that the name had been mentioned by mistake and urged that it should not be published.
“A case has been registered against Swati Maliwal as she had undersigned the notice, which was aired in a prominent television show. A journalist from the same channel has also been named for not following due diligence… and naming the rape victim. However, neither of them are accused… charges will be added only after the investigation,” said Verma.
Responding to the FIR, Maliwal tweeted, “DCW issues Notice to PS Burari for role in 14 year old girls case. 2 days later Delhi Police registers baseless FIR against me. Vendetta?”
She added, “My fault: Raised questions on failure of Delhi Police in protecting 14 year old girl. Will raise more issues. Not scared of FIR. Jai Hind.”
Maliwal continued, “Firstly, not released name of victim. Instead ensured proper medical care in pvt Hospital. Police arrested accused only after DCW Notice.” She asked, “Also, why shud rape victim hide her identity? Shouldn’t rapists be hiding? Is it the shame of a victim that she was subjected to cruelty?”