A woman, who had accused Bahujan Samaj Party MP Atul Rai of raping her, and a man set themselves on fire outside the Supreme Court on Monday morning, reported the Hindustan Times. Both of them have suffered severe burn injuries and are admitted to a hospital.
Rai has been in jail in connection with the rape case since June 2019. Before their immolation bid, the woman, in a Facebook Live video, accused the Uttar Pradesh Police of supporting Rai, reported The Indian Express.
“They have issued a non-bailable warrant against me,” she said in the video. “The judge has summoned me. They are all a part of nexus...Me and my witness were trapped.”
Earlier in August, a non-bailable warrant was issued against the woman based on a complaint by Rai’s brother Pawan Kumar in 2020. He had alleged that the woman had forged documents to hide her date of birth.
In November 2020, the chief judicial magistrate had directed the police to file a forgery case against the woman. The police said they sought a non-bailable warrant against her as she “remained untraceable despite several raids”. A local court in Varanasi approved the request on August 2.
The woman was booked under Indian Penal Code Sections 419 (cheating by personation), 420 (cheating and dishonestly inducing delivery of property), 467 (forgery of valuable security, will, etc), 468 (purpose of cheating), 471 (using as genuine a forged document) and 120-B (criminal conspiracy).
In December 2020, the woman had filed another complaint against the MP and his aide for allegedly maligning her image, according to the Hindustan Times. She alleged that those associated with Rai have been harassing her and her family.
On Monday, the police said the woman and the man tried to enter the Supreme Court around 12.30 pm, but were not allowed.
“The duo set themselves on fire after pouring kerosene oil,” said Deputy Commissioner of Police (New Delhi) Deepak Yadav added, according to The Indian Express. “Police personnel at the gate saw them and rushed to save them with blankets. The fire was doused and the two were rushed to Ram Manohar Lohia hospital in a police van.”
Officers said they have shared details about both of them with the Uttar Pradesh Police, and have informed their families. “We have identified them but don’t know how they are related,” one of them added. “Both are unfit for statement. We will have to ask UP police about their details.”
Uttar Pradesh Additional Director General (Law and Order) Prashant Kumar said they have been informed about the immolation incident. “…We are waiting for a report from the Delhi Police or will definitely take appropriate action based on the video,” he said.