The National Commission for Women on Tuesday asked Delhi Commissioner of Police Amulya Patnaik to initiate a “speedy investigation” into the harassment of journalist Barkha Dutt on social media, PTI reported. The panel’s chief, Rekha Sharma, also asked the Delhi Police to provide feedback in the case at an early date.
Dutt tweeted her thanks to the women’s commission after the notice. “I await the response of Delhi Police – I filed a formal complaint with them yesterday,” she said.
On Sunday, the journalist had tweeted that her “doors are open to any Kashmiris” who need help or feel vulnerable. “Those abusing and vilifying innocent citizens are sympathisers of terrorists in the garb of nationalists,” she said.
Several Kashmiri students and residents were allegedly harassed and threatened following the terror attack in Pulwama last week, with many being asked to leave their colleges or vacate their homes.
However, early on Monday, Dutt said that she had closed her direct messages on Twitter as an “abusive mob” was sending her messages. In another tweet, she said: “Deluged with WhatsApp [sic] messages since yesterday that are abusive and threatening. Seems an organised hate campaign against some of us. One sender confirms my mobile number being circulated in groups.”
In a series of tweets, Dutt shared several phone numbers from which she received either abusive calls or messages. She tagged the Delhi Police and Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh in the tweets warning the abusers of a first information report.
On Tuesday, Dutt tweeted that she had received close to 1,000 abusive messages and calls so far. “I outed the men who did this,” she added. “Twitter locked me till many of the details were taken down.”