The Supreme Court on Monday ordered the Uttar Pradesh government to constitute a special investigation team to probe the sexual harassment allegations levelled by a law student against former Bharatiya Janata Party MP Chinmayanand, PTI reported.
A bench of Justices R Banumathi and AS Bopanna said they were not expressing any opinion on the “correctness of the charges or otherwise”.
The court said the SIT should be headed by an Inspector General rank officer, and will have an officer of Superintendent of Police rank to look into the grievances raised by the woman. It requested the Allahabad High Court Chief Justice to constitute a bench to monitor the investigation in the two first information reports lodged in the case.
The court also asked the Uttar Pradesh government to look for an educational institution where the woman and her brother can be given admission as they may not be able to continue studying at the same one under the given circumstances.
A group of lawyers had approached the Supreme Court last week requesting for the case to be taken up suo motu. The 23-year-old law student had gone missing last week after posting a video about alleged harassment by influential people on August 24. Although she did not name anyone, a missing-person complaint filed by her father named Chinmayanand, who is the president of her college administration. The Uttar Pradesh Police, on August 27, had booked Chinmayanand on kidnapping charges. She was found in Rajasthan on August 30.
The top court had met the woman on Friday and directed the Delhi police commissioner to send a team to Uttar Pradesh to escort her parents to the national Capital. The judges had also asked the court registry to make arrangements for the woman’s stay in Delhi for four days.
Chinmayanand’s lawyer has refuted the harassment allegations, claiming that it was an extortion attempt. The BJP leader is a three-time Lok Sabha MP and was also a minister of state in Atal Bihari Vajpayee’s administration. The 72-year-old claimed on Wednesday that he was being framed like Unnao rape-accused legislator Kuldeep Singh Sengar.
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