After sexual harassment allegations levelled against the Haryana Sports Minister Sandeep Singh by a woman coach, Bhartiya Kisan Union (BKU) leader Daljeet Singh on Monday said Khap panchayat warned of extensive protest if the minister is not arrested by January 7. “We want to ensure that justice is delivered to the victim woman. Khap has given the government time till January 7. If Haryana Sports Minister Sandeep Singh is not sacked and arrested, we will protest extensively,” Daljeet Singh told ANI.
Earlier, a woman, who is a junior athlete coach, held a press conference at the office of the opposition party Indian National Lok Dal (INLD), wherein she alleged that Haryana Sports Minister Sandeep Singh harassed her from February to November last year, by repeated messages on social media and had touched her inappropriately and also threatened her in messages. During the press briefing, the alleged victim demanded that the Manohar Lal Khattar government immediately sack Sandeep Singh and set up a Special Investigation Team (SIT) to probe the matter.
Notably, on Sunday, the woman told ANI that she opened up about the incident to the public after her patience exhausted. “I am also a player, think how much patience I would have to tolerate such ill behaviour of this person from February till now,” the woman said, adding that she didn’t open up about the incident earlier as she was afraid of negative impact on the sports industry.”I tried as much as I could. He created, such an atmosphere officially that a girl goes to him automatically,” she added.
The woman reiterated that she opened up to the public only after her patience broke up.To a question about other victims, hesitating to open up, she said, “I have full hope as soon as he resigns and is behind bars, those people will definitely come forward.” “Everyone should know how an Olympic-level athlete misbehaved with another national-level athlete,” she said, demanding strict action against the minister.
However, after meeting the complainant, Haryana Home Minister Anil Vij assured everyone of justice. “I have listened to her about her complaint. I will talk to the Chief Minister on this matter. We will ensure that justice is served,” Haryana Home minister Anil Vij said after meeting the woman complainant at his official residence in Ambala.
Olympian and Haryana Sports Minister Sandeep Singh has been brushing off the allegations, levelled against him by the junior athlete coach.The Chandigarh police have registered an FIR against the Haryana Sports Minister following a complaint by the female coach. A case has been registered under sections 354, 354A, 354B, 342, and 506 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) and begun an investigation into the matter.
Responding to the development, Haryana Sports Minister told ANI that he has handed over the responsibility of the Sports department to Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar till pending enquiry.