No trespass by mayor, and others: Report by child commission

Report says ‘visit was intimated in advance to Snehalaya superintendent’, entries were made in visitors’ register.

By: Express News Service | Chandigarh | Published:February 8, 2017 3:53 am
snehalaya220100dl1273-759 IN ITS probe into the alleged trespassing on Snehalaya by Mayor Asha Jaswal, two BJP councillors and others, the Chandigarh Commission for Protection of Child Rights (CCPCR) has given a clean chit to Jaswal and concluded that “no trespass has been committed”. (Representational Image)

IN ITS probe into the alleged trespassing on Snehalaya by Mayor Asha Jaswal, two BJP councillors and others, the Chandigarh Commission for Protection of Child Rights (CCPCR) has given a clean chit to Jaswal and concluded that “no trespass has been committed”. The probe was conducted by three members of the commission — chairperson Prof Devi Sirohi and two other members, Parmod Sharma and Prof Nishtha Jaswal.

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Sirohi relinquished her charge on Tuesday and refused to make any comment on the report. The probe was conducted within three days of the lodging of an FIR against Mayor Asha Jaswal, BJP councillors Ravi Kant Sharma and Rajesh Kalia along with others. The FIR was registered on the complaint of the director of social welfare department, Chandigarh, Nishu Singhal, on February 4.

The probe report stated, “No trespass has been committed as her visit was intimated in advance to Snehalaya superintendent Mukesh Lata and she was duly greeted and welcomed on arrival. And all her team members complied with requirement of entry into visitors’ register.”

The report mentioned that from the comments given by Mayor Jaswal, it appeared that the objective of her visit along with other councillors and team members was to distribute sweets as a matter of tradition followed by MC, especially around Republic Day.

The report noted that Jaswal’s desire to distribute sweets had not been denied in any of the statements by staff members of Snehalaya or other officials of the social welfare department.

On the allegation that she met the victim of sexual abuse, the report categorically stated, “None of the statements discloses how the victim child was identified and came in contact with mayor and her team members. Every statement mentioned that she along with other councillors spoke to the victim in a closed room.”

The commission observed, “It seems apparent that some staff member of Snehalaya introduced the victim child to mayor in a separate room. With no stretch of imagination, it can be presumed that mayor already knew the identity of the victim child on her first visit. Mayor has expressly mentioned that warden and superintendent introduced her to victim child but this has been duly denied by warden and superintendent.”

The report said that it had not been established that the media took photographs of Jaswal with the victim child at her instance.

The inquiry report was prepared after taking into account the statements given by the mayor, staff of the Snehalaya, including child welfare officers, counsellors, wardens and house mothers.

The commission recommended that there must be a policy regarding visits of common people, VIPs or mediapersons in Snehalaya.

Mayor Asha Jaswal said, “As I have not received the report, I would not be able to comment
on it.”

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