The Central Bureau of Investigation on Saturday took over the investigation into the Pollachi serial sexual assault and blackmail case and filed two first information reports in the case, The Hindu reported.
The first FIR is based on the complaint of a college girl who alleged that she was assaulted by four men. The second FIR is based on a complaint lodged by her brother alleging that he was assaulted by a gang at the main accused’s behest. The Tamil Nadu government had asked the CBI to take over the case.
The eight accused named in the FIRs are Sabarirajan, Thirunavukarasu, Satheesh, Vasanthakumar, Senthil, Babu, Mani and Vasanthakumar, NDTV reported.
The case relates to allegations that a gang of men have been befriending hundreds of women on social media and then sexually molesting them since 2013. In some cases, the men shot explicit videos of the women and used those to blackmail their victims, police said.
The allegations of the sexual harassment and blackmail racket came to light on February 25, when a 19-year-old college student in Pollachi filed a complaint against them for sexually harassing her. On February 24, the brother of the college student who filed the case got into a scuffle with the four men. When the police intervened, the victim’s brother explained that the accused had embarrassing pictures and videos of his sister.
On Saturday, ten women lawyers asked the Madras High Court to direct the state to set up a fact-finding panel to help the survivors to lodge complaints, NDTV reported. The group of lawyers also asked the court to direct the chairperson of the state commission for women to set up a permanent complaint committee in every district. The lawyers suggested that the permanent panel include a retired district judge, women lawyers, psychiatrists and social activists.