Maliwal's tit-for-tat complaint against Barkha, drags Dikshit

Maliwal's tit-for-tat complaint against Barkha, drags Dikshit

Maliwal's tit-for-tat complaint against Barkha, drags Dikshit

Hitting back at her predecessor Barkha Shukla Singh, Delhi Commission for Women (DCW) chief Swati Maliwal today filed a complaint of financial bunglings against her with the Anti-Corruption Branch demanding strong action.

In her complaint, she also accused former DCW chief Kiran Walia of misappropriation of funds and alleged that the fraud took place within the knowledge of then Chief Minister Shiela Dikshit.

"The commission while pursuing the files of the previous commission has discovered instances of gross financial irregularities and high misappropriation of government funds done by previous chairpersons, namely Barkha Shukla Singh and Kiran Walia, with some instances prima facie being carried out under directions of then Delhi Chief Minister Shiela Dikshit," Maliwal alleged in the complaint.

While the ACB officials maintained that the complaint is being looked into, Shukla rejected the allegations terming them as "politically motivated". Maliwal's complaint comes days after the ACB registered an FIR against her in connection with alleged illegal recruitments in the women's panel based on a complaint filed by Shukla.

The allegations in the complaint include financial fraud of over Rs 50 lakhs in name of Nirbhaya and a silent march for her on January 2, 2013, appointment of a sitting MLA as DCW chief providing opportunities for misuse of office, diversion of funds for political gains and personal glorification, paid interviews and irregularities in celebration of International Women's day over the years.

"While holding the post of Chairperson her (Shukla's ) conduct amounted to misusing of public office with aim to benefit certain individuals. Every year, a majority of the budget of the commission was spent only on organising such functions and giving out advertisements which has been criticised by audit reports time and again," the complaint said.

Shukla rejected the allegations against her and further alleged that Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal had asked her to go slow on cases against his party leaders Kumar Vishwas and Somnath Bharti.

"The complaint against me is a politically motivated move coming at a time when Maliwal and DCW are being investigated on my complaint and evidence provided by me.  ACB should conduct appropriate inquiry and the truth should surface," she said.

Shukla also rejected Maliwal's claim that her predecessor had handled only one case during her tenure as DCW chief. "It is laughable to say that I had only handled one case in my 9-year-long tenure as DCW chief. We handled more than 1.5 lakh cases during the period. Also, about the allegation that wives of IAS and IPS officers were employed in the commission by me, I ask Maliwal to make any such names public," she said. According to ACB officials, the complaint is being investigated.

"We have received Maliwal's complaint of financial bunglings against Barkha Shukla. The matter is being looked into and an enquiry will be initiated soon," a senior ACB official said.

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