Delhi Commission for Women chief Swati Maliwal met Union minister Sushma Swaraj on Monday and demanded the registration of an FIR against India Hockey captain Sardar Singh, for an alleged sexual assault on an Indian- origin British woman hockey player.
Maliwal, along with the woman player, met the External Affairs Minister at her residence and complained of alleged inaction by police despite DCW forwarding the complaint about 14 days ago.
“We forwarded the complaint 14 days ago but there has been no FIR yet. If there is merit or no merit in the case that can be investigated later but why no FIR has been lodged?” Maliwal told reporters after the meeting.
The woman had approached DCW alleging that she was physically assaulted by Singh, that there was an attempt to push her from the top floor of a five-star hotel in Delhi and that she was raped by Singh therein.
DCW had then forwarded the complaint to Delhi Police and also demanded that an FIR be registered against Punjab Police for failing to register FIR against Singh despite the woman alleging rape and assault in January 2016.
“The law clearly states that if a woman says that she has been raped, police has to file an FIR. But Punjab Police did not do so despite the woman approaching them and even upon revelation of cognisable offence. Now, Delhi Police is also doing the same.
“We have been assured by Sushma Swaraj that she will look into the issue and an FIR will be lodged soon,” Maliwal said.
The DCW chief also submitted a letter to Swaraj that it is unbecoming of the country to deal with the case in this manner.
“It is unbecoming for the nation that an international athlete, who is the first Asian woman to represent England in hockey, is being made to run from pillar to post for filing an FIR. It is imperative that the allegations of the complainant be investigated properly in a fast-track manner,” the letter said.
The 21-year-old complainant was the first British-Asian woman to represent England in hockey in 2010 as part of their junior women’s team. She had filed a police complaint in February in Ludhiana following which an SIT was formed to probe the sexual harassment allegations. The SIT had given a clean chit to the Indian hockey team skipper.
Sardar denied all the allegations levelled against him, saying they were‘inappropriate’ and ‘false’.