Staff Reporter

The incident took place at Prime Minister’s Office; stated to be out of danger

NEW DELHI: A woman Research and Analysis Wing official allegedly tried to commit suicide by consuming some poisonous substance at the Prime Minister’s Office here on Tuesday. She was stated to be out of danger.

The incident took place around 2 p.m. when 46-year-old Nisha Bhatia, a Director in the Cabinet Secretariat, consumed poison at being denied entry.

She had previously lodged a complaint alleging harassment at workplace. Ms. Bhatia was rushed to Ram Manohar Lohia Hospital where she has been kept under observation.

The police will take necessary action on the basis of her statement.

Harassment charge

According to a Cabinet Secretariat release, Ms. Bhatia had lodged a complaint last year alleging sexual harassment by her Joint Secretary. It was enquired into by the Complaint Committee which also had an external woman officer. However, Ms. Bhatia withdrew her complaint, said the release and added that the official was given several opportunities to present her case, but she refused to cooperate with the committee.

The committee summed up the inquiry on May 19 and found that her allegations were not substantiated.

According to the release, several complaints against Ms. Bhatia were received meanwhile from different officials alleging unauthorised communication, contact with the media, insubordination, misbehaviour, abuse of authority and sending objectionable and offensive SMSs to senior Government officials.

“Based on the examination of reports of her ‘erratic’ behaviour, a senior medical officer of the All-India Institute of Medical Sciences opined presence of a psychiatric illness in her and advised psychiatric opinion to assess her condition,” said the release.

According to the Cabinet Secretariat, Ms. Bhatia was advised to go for medical counselling, but she refused. In view of the complaints against her, a preliminary inquiry was ordered on August 8.

“When the officer was informed about initiation of the inquiry on Tuesday (August 19), she indicated that she would not appear in any proceedings and warned that the department would face the consequences,” the release said, adding that she then went to the PMO and attempted suicide.

A direct recruit to RAW, Ms. Bhatia was married to an Indian Administrative Service official and has two children.

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