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  India   All India  01 Nov 2018  MJ Akbar: #MeToo allegations scurrilous

MJ Akbar: #MeToo allegations scurrilous

THE ASIAN AGE.
Published : Nov 1, 2018, 6:44 am IST
Updated : Nov 1, 2018, 6:44 am IST

The woman journalist has accused Mr Akbar of sexual misconduct around 20 years ago.

Former Union minister M.J. Akbar (Photo: PTI/File)
 Former Union minister M.J. Akbar (Photo: PTI/File)

New Delhi: Former Union minister M.J. Akbar, who has filed a criminal defamation case against journalist Priya Ramani, told a Delhi court on Wednesday that an “immediate damage” has been caused to him due to the “scurrilous”, concocted and false allegations of sexual misconduct levelled against him.

Mr Akbar appeared before additional chief metropolitan magistrate Samar Vishal and recorded his statement to support the defamation complaint filed by him against Ms Ramani on October 15.

The woman journalist has accused Mr Akbar of sexual misconduct around 20 years ago.

“Indeed there was an immediate damage because of the scurrilous nature of these concocted and false allegations. I was attacked in my personal capacity about alleged and fabricated non-events allegedly done two decades ago,” the former Union minister said in his statement.

“I chose in that environment to seek justice in my personal capacity without the Appurtenance of Office. This is why I offered my resignation as minister of state, Government of India.

“My reputation has been tarnished in the eyes of general public and those who are near and dear and known to me,” he said.

Mr Akbar, who had resigned from the Union council of ministers on October 17, has concluded the recording of his statement. The court has fixed November 12 for further hearing of the case when the statements of witnesses named by  the BJP leader  will be recorded.

Mr  Akbar’s name cropped up on the social media when he was in Nigeria, as the #MeToo campaign raged on in India. Multiple women have come out with accounts of alleged sexual harassment by him when he was a journalist. He  had termed the allegations “false, fabricated and deeply distressing” and said he was taking appropriate legal action against them.

Expressing her readiness to fight the defamation allegations, Ms Ramani had said, “Rather than engage with the serious allegations that many women have made against him, he seeks to silence them through intimidation and harassment.”    

Tags: mj akbar, sexual misconduct