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AAP’s Ashutosh to Appear Before NCW for Defending Sandeep Kumar

The AAP leader has been accused of adopting an “objectifying tone” against women by the panel.

Updated
India
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Aam Admi Party leader Ashutosh will be meeting National Commission for Women chairperson Lalitha Kumaramangalam on Thursday after he was summoned for his controversial blog defending former AAP minister Sandeep Kumar, who was sacked over an “objectionable CD”.

After the Delhi Police registered a complaint against AAP leader Ashutosh for his blog, the National Commission of Women had summoned the leader.

Lalitha Kumaramangalam, chairperson of the panel, told a television channel that Ashutosh’s blog had an “objectifying tone” against women in the country.

We have asked him to come on 8 September. This is in response to what we feel is a reprehensible and demeaning blog Ashutosh wrote, where he defended a man accused of rape. The Commission has taken a note in the larger interest because we feel that as a spokesperson of a party that governs Delhi and a party whose members have been accused of many incidents of violence against women, he should not be writing a blog like this which reeks of patriarchy and misogyny.
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Prior to the NCW’s summon, Subodh Jain, RTI activist and former journalist registered a complaint against the leader at the Jyoti Nagar police station in northeast Delhi. His wrath was evident from the fact that he demanded a “mental check-up” for the leader.

Ashutosh in his blog claimed that if “two consenting adults are indulging in sex, then there isn’t anything wrong with it.” He added that even public figures are entitled to “some private space”.

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We have received the complaint against Ashutosh and it is being looked into for further action. No case has been registered so far.
Senior Delhi Police Officer

Ashutosh’s blog, that referred to the reported relationships of Mahatma Gandhi and Jawaharlal Nehru with women to defend Kumar over the “objectionable” CD and claimed that he was sacked as a minister for “perception management”, has invited widespread rancour from opposition and AAP alike.

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Rift Within the AAP?

Just a few days ago, MLA Devinder Sehrawat had sent a letter to Arvind Kejriwal, criticising party leader Ashutosh’s stand and alleged that a “coterie” was damaging the party.

He said “justifications” put forth by Ashutosh for Kumar’s conduct were not “as per the acceptable value systems”.

Sehrawat also hit out at AAP’s Delhi unit convener Dilip Pandey, questioning his conduct and said there were disturbing reports from Punjab.

He signed off the letter to Kejriwal saying that he should let the people know that “we still believe that we will change politics”.

The scandal has exposed fractures within the party; it would be interesting to witness its leaders’ next steps.

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Ashutosh’s Response

Ashutosh took to Twitter to defend himself and said he hoped the media was picking up his response as well.

(With PTI inputs)

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Topics:  Aam Aadmi Party   AAP   Ashutosh 

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