A court in Assam’s Barpeta district has dropped charges of obscene acts in public spaces and assault of a public servant in a case against Gujarat MLA Jignesh Mevani, reported PTI.
Mevani had been booked in April last year in a case related to the alleged assault of a woman police officer. He was first arrested on April 19 from Palanpur in Gujarat and was brought to Kokrajhar, where a case was registered against him for a tweet about Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
The Congress leader had tweeted that the prime minister worshipped Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi’s assassin, Nathuram Godse. He was granted bail in the case on April 25 after a court said there were no reasonable grounds to keep Mevani in detention.
However, he was arrested again almost immediately on a complaint by a woman police officer named Debika Brahma. She alleged that Mevani had “uttered slang words” and assaulted her while he was being taken from Guwahati airport to Kokrajhar district.
“He [Mevani] pointed finger towards me and tried to frighten me and pushed me on my seat with force,” Brahma wrote in her complaint. “He thus assaulted me during the execution of my legal duty of being a public servant and outraged my modesty by touching me inappropriately while pushing.”
Mevani was booked under Indian Penal Code Sections 294 (obscene act in any public place), 323 (punishment for voluntarily causing hurt), 353 (assault or criminal force to deter public servant from discharge of his duty) and 354 (assault or criminal force to woman with intent to outrage her modesty).
The Barpeta court has now dropped Indian Penal Code sections 294 and 353 from the case. But Mevani will still have to face proceedings for the other charges.
“We know that these two sections have been dropped against him,” said Mevani’s advocate Bilal Hussain. “But we are yet to receive the certified copy. We will know details only after we get it.”