The Communist Party of India (Marxist) in Kerala on Friday set up a two-member commission to investigate the allegations of sexual assault against party MLA P Sasi, reported PTI. State Law and Cultural Affairs Minister AK Balan and party MP PK Sreemathy will be part of the panel.

A leader of the Democratic Youth Federation of India has alleged that Sasi, the MLA from Shornur in Palakkad district, tried to sexually abuse her at a party office and sought sexual favours for helping her get higher posts in the organisation.

“The inquiry commission will complete its probe soon,” Sreemathy told reporters in Thiruvananthapuram, adding that the panel will ask the complainant to give her statement.

The ruling CPI(M) rejected claims from opposition Congress and Bharatiya Janata Party that it had attempted to silence the matter. It said the panel was in fact set up on August 31. The party received the complaint against Sasi on August 14. Party State Secretary Kodiyeri Balakrishnan heard the complainant’s side of the story and Sasi was also called to provide an explanation, said CPI(M).

“If the party points out that I have erred, I will accept it with both hands,” Sasi told reporters at Cheruplassery in Palakkad district. “If there is a complaint, the CPI(M) has the strength to look into it.”

NCW may send team to Kerala

The National Commission for Women will send an inquiry team to Kerala if Director General of Police Lokanath Behara does not inform it about the action taken within 15 days. On Thursday, the commisssion had asked Behara to investigate the claims of sexual abuse.

“The National Commission for Women would dispatch an inquiry team to Kerala to probe the case of alleged sexual harassment of a woman by a CPI(M) MLA if the DGP does not respond to the women body’s direction within 15 days,” said the commission’s chairperson Rekha Sharma.

The panel had tried to speak to the complainant but, Sharma alleged, she is being forced to keep quiet.