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Give satisfactory explanation or quit: Cong to Akbar

The Congress said Wednesday Union minister M J Akbar must either offer a satisfactory explanation on the allegations of sexual harassment against him or resign immediately.

The party also demanded an inquiry into his conduct.

As the #MeToo campaign gathered momentum in India, some women journalists have come out and accused Akbar, a former editor and now the minister of state for external affairs, of sexually harassing them during his stint as a journalist.

Congress spokesperson S Jaipal Reddy, in a press conference, said, “I think Mr M J Akbar must either offer a satisfactory explanation or resign forthwith. How can he be in the ministry with serious allegations being levelled against him by responsible journalists who worked with him. Let there be an inquiry into it. We demand an inquiry into M J Akbar’s conduct.”

Reddy also questioned External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj’s silence on the issue, saying she is evading responsibility and is not prepared to comment on her subordinate.

Earlier AIMIM chief Asaduddin Owaisi on Wednesday demanded removal of M J Akbar from the Union Council of Ministers following allegations of sexual harassment against him.

As the #MeToo campaign gathered momentum in India, some women journalists have come out and accused Akbar, a former editor and now the minister of state for external affairs, of sexually harassing them during his stint as a journalist.

“@mjakbar shame on you and you stood in parliament during T Talaaq Bill & spoke about Muslim women empowerment & to stop their exploitation..,” the All India Majlis-e-Ittehad-ul Muslimeen (AIMIM) chief tweeted.

“@PMOIndia sack this Minister of yours if you truly believe in Beti Bachao,” the Hyderabad Lok Sabha MP said in another tweet.

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