OPINION: Who is to blame for Swati Maliwal incident?

She evidently thought that being an MP she need not follow any law

PTI05_17_2024_000243A Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) MP Swati Maliwal arrives at Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal's residence | PTI

A hue and cry is being raised about the alleged misbehaviour of Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal’s personal assistant Bibhav Kumar, who reportedly assaulted Aam Aadmi Party MP Swati Maliwal recently.

My own opinion is that it is Swati Maliwal who is mainly to blame for this incident.

This is because she entered Kejriwal's residence without his permission. It is a criminal trespass under section 448 Indian Penal Code to enter anyone's house without the owner's permission. If Swati wanted to meet Kejriwal at his residence she should have sought an appointment by phoning him or a member of his staff, but evidently she did not do this, but simply barged into his house and created a ruckus. She evidently thought that being an MP she need not follow any law and could do anything.

Bibhav Kumar has filed a written complaint with the police which was shared by AAP's official X handle, stating that Maliwal illegally entered the chief minister’s residence and created a security breach.

He stated in this complaint that Swati came to the chief minister’s residence and sought permission to enter. After the security officer at the main entry ascertained her identity, she told the security officer to allow her to enter as she had an appointment with the chief minister.

The complainant said the security officer, after checking appointments records, told her that there was no such appointment on record, but she “forcefully entered the CM residence despite the objections of the staff".

Kumar said the MP abused the CM's office staff and “stormed out of the waiting area and entered the main building of CM residence."

Kumar said he requested Swati to follow the procedure for meeting the CM but she hurled abuses at him. He also alleged that she rushed towards him “with the intent to push him away.” 

AAP leader Atishi has alleged that the BJP had sent Swati to Kejriwal's residence as a trap.

I am not going into the question whether or not Swati spoke the truth when she said she was assaulted by Bibhav Kumar. That will be seen by court if the matter goes to trial.

Justice Markandey Katju retired from the Supreme Court in 2011.

The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not purport to reflect the opinions or views of THE WEEK.

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