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Woman IPS Officer's Sexual Harassment Complaint: Madras High Court Directs CB-CID To Complete Probe In 6 Weeks

Sparsh Upadhyay
2 May 2021 11:33 AM GMT
Woman IPS Officers Sexual Harassment Complaint: Madras High Court Directs CB-CID To Complete Probe In 6 Weeks
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The Madras High Court on Friday (April 30) directed the CB-CID to complete the probe into the alleged sexual harassment of a woman IPS officer by a senior police official (now suspended), within six weeks. The Bench of Justice N. Anand Venkatesh ordered thus after perusing the status report filed by the Investigating Officer explaining the progress made in...

The Madras High Court on Friday (April 30) directed the CB-CID to complete the probe into the alleged sexual harassment of a woman IPS officer by a senior police official (now suspended), within six weeks.

The Bench of Justice N. Anand Venkatesh ordered thus after perusing the status report filed by the Investigating Officer explaining the progress made in the investigation

Significantly, the Madras High Court has taken suo moto cognizance of alleged sexual harassment of an IPS cadre woman officer by her senior, a Special DGP, and has decided to monitor the investigation into the case itself.

In a significant move, the Tamil Nadu Government has already suspended the 'Delinquent Officer', Special DGP, who has been charged with sexual harassment of an IPS cadre woman officer two days after the Madras High Court asked it to do the same.

This move came after the Madras High Court on Tuesday (16th March) asked the Tamil Nadu State Government to suspend the Special DGP who has been charged with sexual harassment of an IPS cadre woman officer.

Before the Court, the State Public Prosecutor submitted that when the matter was taken up during the previous occasion on 23rd March 2021, the investigation officer had examined nearly 87 witnesses at that stage.

Subsequently, it was further submitted, nearly 19 witnesses have been examined and their statements have been recorded under Section 161(3) of Cr.P.C., and in all 106 witnesses have been examined.

Also, the investigation officer, who was also present at the time of the hearing, stated that the investigation would be completed within a period of 4 to 6 weeks and the final report would be filed against the accused persons after getting the necessary sanction.

Consequently, taking into consideration the status report filed before the Court and also the submissions of the State Public Prosecutor and the statement made by the investigation officer, the Court said,

"There shall be a direction to the investigation officer to take all efforts to complete the investigation and file the final report before the concerned jurisdictional Court within a period of six weeks from today."

Background

On 01st March, while taking the suo moto cognizance of the case, the Court had minced no words in criticizing the alleged incident and also expressed displeasure at the manner in which the Special DGP allegedly used his contacts and power to prevent the victim officer from even filing a complaint against him.

The Judge had expressed his concern regarding the fact that if an officer holding a high rank in Indian Police Services can be harassed and be forced to not file a complaint, what must be the state of ordinary women who are victims of such acts.

Further, the Court heard the plea seeking issuance of directions to the CB-CID to effectively conduct the investigation in the matter, duly monitored by the HC.

The Plea sought a direction to submit a periodical status report on the progress made in the investigation before this Court and to complete the investigation as expeditiously as possible.

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