The All India Football Federation’s (AIFF) integrity officer has cleared the sports body’s general secretary, Kushal Das of alleged “sexual assault” and “molestation” at the workplace charges – with the officer calling such allegations as “frivolous and devoid of truth” in his report.
Former Minerva Punjab FC owner, Ranjit Bajaj had recently alleged that there were “two cases of molestation of employees at workplace” against Kushal Das and that the head of the committee which deals with sexual harassment complaints at the AIFF was “forced by president Praful Patel to bury the report”.
However, Javed Siraj who is the integrity officer of the AIFF came to the conclusion that there was no such thing that took place after conducting the inquiry which included questioning of the presiding officers of the federation’s internal complaints committee over the years.
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Integrity officer gives AIFF general secretary Kushal Das clean chit on molestation charges
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“All the presiding officers of committee namely Shanta Gopinath, Manager, Jyotsna Gupta, EA, Indu Chaudhry, Sr Manager and Mr Col Mehta AGS Admin were questioned by sending questionnaire. All of them have stated that no complaint of sexual harassment was received against Kushal Das or any employee of AIFF and no case of sexual harassment ever occurred in the AIFF,” he stated in his report.
“Regarding the tweet pertaining to incident dated 14.02.2020 after the IWL (Indian Women’s League) Final in a restaurant near Chancery Hotel Bengaluru, Mrs Indu Chaudhry, Sr Manager was questioned and she replied that “there is no comment to make on the attached tweets”.
“Mrs Shanta Gopinath was heading the Internal Complaint Committee during that period and she has already denied having received any complaint.” “From the above facts it is clear that the allegations levelled against Mr Kushal Das, General Secretary AIFF is totally baseless, frivolous and are devoid of truth” Siraj added.
AIFF for their part had refuted the allegations made against Das as soon as the tweets by Bajaj were put up, with it being understood that Bajaj and the AIFF had been at loggerheads in the past with the national federation suspending him for one year in 2018 after being found “guilty” of making racist remarks against a referee.
In 2019, the AIFF had reprimanded Bajaj for his criticism of the federation on social media. The AIFF found the criticism derogatory in nature, and Siraj’s confidential report also touched upon that.
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