Shornur MLA PK Sasi who was accused of sexually harassing a woman member of the Democratic Youth Federation of India (DYFI) was on Friday reinstated back into the Palakkad District Committee of the CPI(M). This, after the state leadership of the party accepted the request by the district committee to reinstate the MLA.
PK Sasi’s primary membership within the party was suspended for six months in November 2018 after a complaint of sexual harassment was raised against him. A probe committee found that he had spoken in an improper manner on the phone with the woman, however it had also said that there was not enough evidence to prove that he had harassed her at the party office later.
According to reports, the request to reinstate Sasi back into the party was made by the Palakkad District Committee in August this year during a district level meeting of the party, which the party state secretary Kodiyeri Balakrishnan had also attended. However, several members within the party had raised their objections regarding the decision.
Although the suspension period of Sasi got over in May this year, there was a delay in reinstating him into the party as discussions were on regarding the committee to which Sasi would be allowed to rejoin. Leaders like MB Rajesh who were against the reinstatement said that Sasi be reinstated into a local committee rather that a District Committee, which is above.
In June 2019, the woman DYFI member who had made the allegations against PK Sasi quit her post in the DYFI. She had complained to both the state and national leadership of the CPI(M) against the Shoranur MLA. She resigned from the post of DYFI district committee and block secretariat committee in Mannarkkad. She resigned from all organisational posts she held in the DYFI, but said she would continue to be in the youth wing.
Prior to her resignation, the complainant had stated that she was harassed and hounded by DYFI leaders ever since she raised the allegation against Sasi. She added that only a few leaders stood by her during that time and went on to claim that a few people who had supported her were demoted from their positions in the party.