Investigators find Calgary MP Darshan Kang violated harassment rules

Liberal MP Darshan Singh Kang rises in the House of Commons Monday April 18, 2016 in Ottawa. THE CANADIAN PRESS IMAGES/Adrian Wyld

An investigation into a staff member’s harassment complaint against Calgary MP Darshan Kang concluded he violated House of Commons rules.

The investigation into Rhea Bassi’s complaint was called last summer by Pierre Parent, chief human resources officer of the House of Commons.

Bassi, who started working for Kang in his Calgary Skyview riding office in 2015, previously worked for him from 2011 to 2015 while he was an Alberta Liberal member of the legislature.

Bassi levelled several allegations, which included that Kang:

  • Repeatedly hugged her closely.
  • Would grab her hands.
  • Patted her on parts of her body.
  • Would threaten to fire her if she didn’t take his non-work-related phone calls after hours.
  • Repeatedly kissed her against her will.
  • Tricked her into going to his apartment while she was on a business trip to Ottawa.
  • Caressed her hands and feet, and attempted to remove her jacket despite her protests.
  • Repeatedly tried to get into her hotel over her objections while on that business trip.
  • Offered her money to keep quiet when she threatened to complain about his behaviour.

Some of the allegations could not be substantiated due to a lack of evidence in certain cases.

As while there was an offer by Kang to pay Bassi to prevent her from reporting the harassment, it was not clear who initiated that offer.

However, the investigator found it was improper for Kang to have physically touched Bassi and there was evidence that inappropriate contact took place.