SC Refuses To Stay Prajapati’s Arrest; Warns Against “Political Colour”
“Now a political colour is being given to the entire episode. That cannot be permitted”: Justice A K Sikri.
Supreme Court today refused to stay the arrest of Uttar Pradesh minister and Samajwadi Party leader Gayatri Prajapati in connection with cases of alleged gang rape and attempt to rape a woman and her daughter and also warned against giving a political colour to the entire episode
“No. Sorry we are not going to modify any order. Our order was simply to register FIR and to investigate. He can approach the court concerned for seeking bail if he is arrested. We are not monitoring the case against him nor shutting out any legal remedy”, a bench headed by justice A K Sikri said.
The Supreme Court had on February 17 directed the UP police to lodge an FIR against Prajapati in connection with cases of alleged gang rape and attempt to rape a woman and her daughter.
The Bench had also directed the police to inquire and file an action report regarding the incidents in eight weeks.
The apex court’s direction came on a PIL filed by a woman who has alleged repeated gang rape by Prajapati and others and had sought the court’s direction for lodging of an FIR. The complainant informed the court that police has not taken any action on the complaint which was submitted to the Director General of state police.
Counsel appearing for Uttar Pradesh said the petition has been filed in the wake of Assembly elections in the state. However, the petitioner submitted that the petition was filed before the elections were announced and the apex court had issued notice on November 25 last year.
Mehmood Pracha, appearing for the petitioner, said the alleged incident had first taken place in October 2014 and continued till July 2016. When the accused tried to molest her minor daughter, she decided to lodge a complaint.
Pracha said she had given in writing to the DGP in October 2016 but no FIR was lodged. She subsequently moved the apex court seeking justice.
He said while issuing notice to State government and others, the apex court had directed Delhi Commissioner of Police to provide security to the petitioner.
On this, apex court asked the UP government why was there a delay in lodging the FIR and directed it to be done immediately. Prajapati was sacked by Akhilesh Yadav from his cabinet in 2016 during the Yadav family feud but was later reinstated in the council of ministers. He will contest the fifth phase of polls from Amethi, on February 27 .