The Wire's Sidharth Bhatia files police complaint against Twitter accounts accusing him of sexual harassment

Sidharth Bhatia, founder-editor of The Wire, has filed a police complaint to investigate the Twitter accounts which made allegations of sexual harassment against him on 7 October. Bhatia posted a tweet on Thursday, mentioning that he has filed this complaint. He added that The Wire had requested the accusers to come forward with more details, but that no one had thus far.

Bhatia has filed a complaint with the Cyber Cell of the Mumbai Police, to investigate these accounts which he says are "fake handles created by someone to malign me".

The users who made these accusations are Bharti Shukla (@right2livelife) and Reema Sanyal (@domeofthedevil). Shukla accused Bhatia of inappropriately commenting on her at a party, and Sanyal alleged that he sent lewd messages to younger colleagues and harassed them. Bhatia responded on 8 October, where he denied the allegations and said that he did not know either of the accusers.

He mentions that later, another handle which goes by the name 'The Free Lady' and claimed to be a reporter with The Wire Hindi, also accused him. Bhatia said that none of The Wire Hindi's employees are women, and that he lives in Mumbai, whereas the publication is based out of Delhi.

When Bhatia first denied the allegations, he said that he would be open to an inquiry should accusers come forward with details. The Wire also put out a tweet stating that any person who wishes to make a specific complaint about any of the publications' employees can do so by approaching its Internal Complaints Committee, which is headed by managing editor Monobina Gupta.

He has now said that The Wire has set up an external committee headed by a retired Supreme Court judge, who will investigate charges made against Vinod Dua, adding that he is open to being investigated by the same committee, should the accusers come forward. Dua has also put out a statement in response to the allegations against him and mocked the #MeToo movement.

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Updated Date: Oct 18, 2018 10:55:46 IST