Smriti Irani Speaks Up On #MeToo Charges, Says MJ Akbar Better Placed to Speak

Smriti Irani Speaks Up On #MeToo Charges, Says MJ Akbar Better Placed to Speak

Smriti Irani Speaks Up On #MeToo Charges, Says MJ Akbar Better Placed to Speak 

New Delhi: Today, the list of union ministers confronting questions about colleague MJ Akbar, was joined by Smriti Irani. MJ Akbar, who is abroad at a time sex harassment allegations have surfaced against him.

The Textile Minister said that MJ Akbar would be "in a better position to speak" on the allegations, deftly parrying questions about whether the junior foreign minister would be asked to exit the government.

"I think the gentleman concerned would be in a better position to speak. I appreciate that the media is accosting his female colleagues," she said.

"My only appeal is that anybody who is speaking out should in no way be shamed, victimised or mocked," she stressed.

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The Union Textile Minister said it must be difficult for women to speak out. "Women go to work to live their dreams and earn a respectable living. More and more women are winning support. I feel there are enough instruments to deliver justice. Hope these women get justice," she said.

A former editor, MJ Akbar, who headed prominent newspapers like The Telegraph and the Asian Age, has been accused of sexually predatory behavior towards women colleagues, especially newcomers.

However, Foreign Minister Sushma Swaraj and union minister Ravi Shankar Prasad, have dogded questions on him.

Many prominent faces have been caught in the #MeToo whirlwind.  India finally caught up with a movement that commenced last year, when allegations exploded against Oscar winning movie maker Harvey Weinstein.

MJ Akbar has been accussed of at least seven women journalists, which has prompted calls for his resignation from the Congress and other parties.

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