Minister of State for External Affairs MJ Akbar, presently on a visit to Nigeria, is expected to be 'asked to go' upon returning to India. He is scheduled to return on Friday. A reliable source in Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) told Firstpost that the protocol with international visits is that one can't dump them midway and return. "He is expected tomorrow. Protocol is to finish the official work and only then return," the source told Firstpost.
Coming on the heels of accusations of sexual harassment and impropriety levelled by at least nine women against the former editor of The Asian Age, a highly-placed source in the BJP government at the Centre told Firspost that he will be asked to go as soon as he returns from his visit to Nigeria.
MoS for External Affairs MJ Akbar at week-long celebrations of Mahatma Gandhi’s 150 birth anniversary at Indian Language School (ILS), Nigeria's Lagos. pic.twitter.com/WUli1oKH5L
— ANI (@ANI) October 10, 2018
The source elaborated that the party is expected to offer Akbar an 'honourable exit'. "He will be given a chance to explain himself but most probably he will be asked to resign immediately after his visit from Nigeria," the source told Firstpost.
It was a tweet by journalist Priya Ramani — in which she replugged an earlier article — calling Akbar a 'predator' that set the wheels in motion. A number of women subsequently retweeted and shared their own encounters with Akbar, accusing him of making them feel uncomfortable by calling them to his hotel rooms for interviews, inviting himself to their houses with a bottle of alcohol to even turning up at their houses "for coffee".
Apart from Ramani, Ghazala Wahab, Saba Naqvi, Shutapa Paul, Shuma Raha, Suparna Sharma and Prerna Singh Bindra accused the junior minister of sexual harassment over the course of his time as a journalist.
This is a developing story and will be updated
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Updated Date: Oct 11, 2018 13:16:27 IST