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File case against UP minister Prajapati on rape charges, SC orders police

The Supreme Court ordered Uttar Pradesh Police on Friday to register a criminal case against state minister and Samajwadi Party leader Gayatri Prajapati for allegedly gang-raping a woman and also attempting to rape her daughter.

A bench headed by Justice AK Sikri directed police to conduct an inquiry and submit an action taken report to the court in a sealed cover within eight weeks.

The court order came on a petition filed by a woman from Chitrakooot who accused Prajapati of repeatedly raping her.

Prajapati was sacked by chief minister Akhilesh Yadav from his cabinet in 2016 during the family feud with his father Mulayam Singh Yadav and uncle Shivpal Yadav. He was later reinstated.

The petitioner’s lawyer, Mehmood Pracha, submitted that police did not take any action on the complaint that was sent to the director general of Uttar Pradesh Police.

The UP government lawyer, however, justified the delay on the ground that elections were currently underway, and the alleged incident cannot be ascertained since there was delay in filing the complaint.

Pracha rebutted the arguments, saying that the complaint was filed on November 25 last year, much before elections were announced.

According to him, fundamental and civil rights of an individual cannot get suspended when elections are announced and the reason police gave was not appropriate.

He narrated the incident and said that the crime took place between October 2014 and July 2016. He said the woman lodged a complaint only when the minister tried to molest her minor daughter.

Her complaint to the DGP was sent in October 2016 but no FIR was lodged. She subsequently moved the apex court seeking justice, he said. On the first date of hearing, the top court had asked Delhi Police to provide security to the petitioner.

Source: HindustanTimes