Taking strong exception to Hockey India's (HI) response in an alleged sexual assault case against Indian captain Sardar Singh, the Delhi Commission for Women has accused the federation of making "defamatory allegations and remarks" against the statutory body.
The Commission, which termed as "false and malicious" the purported remarks of HI linking the DCW members with AAP, also refused federation's request for 10 weeks' time to submit the details sought by DCW, and asked it to send its reponse within a week or face action.
"The Delhi Commission for Women takes strong exception to your response wherein defamatory allegations and remarks have been made against a Statutory body invested with the powers of a Civil Court.
"Despite the intemperate language and your reluctance to participate/cooperate with us in meting out justice to the victim, we would like to give you further opportunity of seven days from the date of receipt of the instance communication failing which we will be constrained to take appropriate action in accordance with law," the notice read.
In the notice, the DCW chief Swati Maliwal also stated that "the allegations of political jugglery and linkages with the political party 'AAP' against the members of the Commission areÂ false and malicious", while adding that the Commission was discharging its duties on the basis of a complaint forwarded to it by a leader of the BJP, Poonam Azad.
"Your attempt to intimidate the office bearers of this Commission whilst performing their legitimate statutory duties is severely unbecoming of an organization entrusted by the Government of India with the mandate of promoting the national game of Hockey in India," the DCW said.
"As a responsible organization at a national level, you are duty bound to co-operate and provide information to this Commission," Maliwal said in the notice.
On June 15, the Commission had issued a notice to HI president Narinder Batra and had sought an explanation with regard to the allegations made by the complainant against HI and the action taken or proposed to be taken by it in the matter.
HI in turn had said that that it will be able to send a comprehensive response on the matter only after the Olympics get over on August 23 even as it questioned the complainant's "belated" charges.
The complainant, a British woman Hockey player of Indian origin, has alleged rape, physical abuse and criminal intimidation by Singh.
The woman has also alleged that Singh had tried to push her from the top floor of a five-star hotel in Delhi and that she was raped by Singh. Sardar, on his part, has denied the allegations.
In addition, she has alleged that HI has taken no action on her complaint, despite knowing about these incidents and that HI has facilitated her travel to various destinations and stay in hotels to accompany Singh during his hockey matches.
The complainant had also informed the Commission that HI had taken no action on a complaint she had sent to the organisation in May 2016.
The 21-year-old complainant was the first British-Asian woman to represent England in hockey in 2010 as part of their junior women's team. She had filed a police complaint in February in Ludhiana following which an SIT was formed to probe the sexual harassment allegations. The SIT had given a clean chit to the Indian hockey team skipper.