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Punjab text row: State women's panel to take matter up with CM


Press Trust of India Chandigarh
Punjab women's commission chairperson Manisha Gulati said Monday she would take up with the chief minister the matter of a minister allegedly sending an "inappropriate" text to a woman government officer.
However, she refused to take cognisance of the matter, saying the commission has not received a complaint.
Opposition parties in Punjab have been demanding that minister resign and a proper probe be conducted into the matter.
"I will meet Chief Minister Amarinder Singh after he returns from his foreign visit and will raise this matter with him," the Punjab State Commission for Women chief said.Singh is on a visit to Israel.
The minister had allegedly sent an inappropriate message to a woman official some weeks back, triggering opposition demand to sack him from his post.
The minister had sent a couple of messages to the officer earlier and stopped for a while after she warned him. She lodged a complaint against him after he messaged her again over a month ago, according to a media report.
It said after the matter reached the chief minister, the minister was made to apologise to the official.
"Details will be sought from the chief minister on how far the allegations were true and a reply will be sought from him.It will also be asked what was the complaint and a report will be also sought on this matter, Gulati told reporters here.
She said both the cabinet minister and victim would also be heard.
Replying to a question on whether the state commission would take action in the matter, Gulati said action can be taken only if the women's panel receives a complaint.
"We can take action only if a complaint is received, the Punjab women's panel chief said.
Gulati also said suo motu cognisance could have been taken had she read about the complaint on social media, come to know about it from the victim or if the complaint had been submitted with police.
"We do take suo motu notice of the matter. But we should know at least what kind of message was sent," she said.
Gulati also rubbished allegations that the commission was ignoring this issue, saying there was no pressure on her or the panel.
Opposition Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) and the Aam Aadmi Party(AAP) have been demanding that the minister be sacked.
After Opposition trained it's gun against the minister, Singh in a statement had said his government had taken the issue very seriously and had resolved it to the officer's satisfaction.

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First Published: Oct 29 2018 | 5:25 PM IST

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