Goa BJP chief dares Cong to name minister accused of sex scandal

by IANS |

Panaji, Dec 2 (IANS) The ruling BJP in Goa on Thursday dodged questions over whether its government in the state should file a suo moto complaint to probe allegations of sexual harassment against a minister in the state Cabinet.

Responding to the charge of sex scandal levelled on November 30 by state Congress chief Girish Chodankar, who had alleged (without naming) that a Goa Cabinet minister was involved in a sex scandal and was harassing the victim, state BJP President Sadanand Shet Tanavade dared the top state Congress official to name the minister by December 6.

To a question from a mediaperson, as to whether the Goa government would file a suo moto complaint in the sexual offence case against its own minister, like it had done in the case involving former Tehelka editor-in-chief Tarun Tejpal in 2013, Tanavade said that the minister should be specifically named for the government to take action.

"If there is an allegation against a minister, he should be specifically named. The person who has faced harassment should file a complaint. And after that if there is no action, you ask me the same question," Tanavade said.

On November 30, Chodankar in a press conference had alleged that a Cabinet minister in the BJP-led coalition government had sexually exploited a woman. He further alleged that Chief Minister Pramod Sawant was using the Goa Police to destroy evidence connected to the case.

Tanavade on Thursday also accused Chodankar of firing blanks in the air and questioned his "guts" to name the minister allegedly involved in the affair.

"I dare him (Chodankar) to declare the name before December 6. He should name the person and the victim should file a complaint," Tanavade said.

"He should have proof or guts to name the person. Only then he (Chodankar) can talk. After that (naming the minister and filing of complaint) if you ask why the CM has not taken action, I will respond to it at that point of time," Tanavade said.

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