Thursday, Nov 27, 2014

Suspended Goa Youth Congress president Valanka Alemao alleges ‘harassment’

Press Trust of India | Panaji | Posted: July 26, 2014 5:57 pm

Valanka Alemao, who was on Friday suspended as the chief of Goa Youth Congress, on Saturday alleged that she was “tortured and harassed” by the party officials who wanted her to resign.

State Congress chief John Fernandes refuted the allegations, saying that he had not met her or spoken with her after the Lok Sabha campaign began, so there was no question of harassment.

Alemao, accused of deliberately staying away from campaigning during the Lok Sabha polls, on Saturday claimed that local office-bearers of Congress were pressuring her to quit her post, but she refused.

“I was harassed and tortured by local party officials. I was abused with derogatory words by GPCC chief John Fernandes, legislator Aleixo Lourenco Reginaldo and spokesperson Pratima Coutinho,” Alemao alleged.

Fernandes claimed that she only wanted to get people’s sympathy. “I have never met her or phoned her since Lok Sabha campaign began. So the question of abusing or torturing her does not arise. That must be her imagination,” he told PTI.

Valanka Alemao, daughter of former Goa minister Churchill Alemao, is facing a probe by state Congress for alleged anti-party activities, and also by the party’s central committee which is studying the reasons for poll debacle.

“I was called by the A K Antony committee to depose over allegations of anti-party activities. I explained to them that I was allowed by Goa desk incharge Digvijay Singh to campaign for the party in Delhi, Maharashtra or Karnataka. I was campaigning in Delhi. The committee members were sympathetic to my view. I am shocked to see the suspension letter,” Alemao said, talking to reporters on Saturday.

“I am the only woman president of Youth Congress in the country and I am being treated like this, which proves that the Congress is not serious about women empowerment,” she added.

When contacted, Koutinho said Alemao never came to Congress House in the recent past, so there was no question of Koutinho or anybody else abusing her. Reginaldo also refuted the allegations.

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