After a former woman office-bearer of the BJP’s minority wing in Aligarh got an FIR registered against some local BJP leaders alleging sexual harassment, several party leaders and workers staged a dharna at the local police station on Thursday, demanding action against the complainant for “defamation”.
The FIR was registered on charges including molestation, extortion, rioting, assault and criminal intimidation against the BJP’s Aligarh district minority wing chief Imran Ali Saifi and others, with the woman alleging that threats were issued to her that she would be booked in false cases if she did not agree to work under Saifi’s team on his terms.
“I did not name the office-bearers earlier as I was afraid. They had threatened to lodge fake cases against me. They were also demanding money. I have faith in the BJP, Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath… that they would safeguard the interest of women. But some BJP office-bearers of the minority wing in Aligarh are working against the same,” the woman said.
Sources said former BJP Mayor Shakuntala Bharti, along with BJP Aligarh city unit president Vivek Saraswat and other office-bearers reached the local police station on Thursday evening after hearing about the FIR and sat on a dharna alleging that the complaint was the fallout of “vengeance.”
“The woman used to run a lucky draw in the guise of which she used to take money of poor people with a promise to return the same with interest. For some reason, she stopped giving payments around a year ago and people started coming to us with complaints. Thus we had removed her from her post around that time,” said Saraswat. He added, “Recently, a group of people met our minority wing in-charge (Saifi) complaining that the woman was not returning their money and was even filing cases against them. Thus, he went along with them to the police station and out of vengeance, she lodged a case against him and others.”
He said BJP office bearers had gone to the police station just to demand that either the fake case be withdrawn or a proper investigation should take place also into the complaints of a large number of people, who approached Saifi.
The complainant told The Indian Express that she owes some people money and added that she has written to the District Magistrate informing that she had been unable to return the money amid the Covid-19 pandemic and lockdown. She, however, added that she stands by her allegations against the BJP office-bearers.
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