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Friday, September 24, 2021

Jharkhand: Rape case against Marandi adviser; months after his plea for CBI probe against CM

Sunil Tiwary had filed writ petition seeking CBI probe in rape case against Jharkhand Chief Minister Hemant Soren.

Written by Abhishek Angad | Jharkhand |
Updated: August 19, 2021 2:01:15 am
Babulal Marandi (Front) with others coming out from the president house. (Express archives)

The Jharkhand Police has booked BJP leader Babulal Marandi’s political advisor Sunil Tiwary for allegedly raping a domestic help at his residence in March last year.

The FIR was registered after the 20-year-old woman lodged a complaint in Argora Police Station on August 16.

This comes months after Tiwary, a former journalist, filed an intervenor application in Bombay High Court, and later a writ petition in the Supreme Court, seeking a court-monitored Central Bureau of Investigation probe in a rape allegation against Jharkhand Chief Minister Hemant Soren.

In June, Tiwary had also written to Jharkhand Chief Secretary and Director General of Police claiming that a “false” case could be registered against him following the applications.

The FIR against Tiwary was registered under IPC sections 376 (1) (rigorous imprisonment of 10 years for rape), 354A (sexual harassment), 354B (assault or criminal force with an intent to disrobe). 354D (stalking), 506 (punishment for criminal intimidation) and under the SC/ST (Prevention of Atrocities Act).

According to the FIR, the 20-year-old complainant stated that while Tiwary initially behaved “properly”, he later started “sexually harassing” her. She said the rape occurred on the rooftop of the house on March 20. She stated that the same day in the evening, Tiwary sought her forgiveness saying that he “committed the act in a drunken state”. The woman also alleged that Tiwary had used casteist expletives and had threatened her life.

No arrest has been made yet.

Marandi, who was also Jharkhand’s first Chief Minister, claimed a “conspiracy” behind the FIR. “The Hemant Soren government is suppressing an issue in which he himself is an accused and Tiwary is an intervenor in that case… This government is acting in a conspiracy, with malicious intent and irresponsibly…and the police has become a tool of the government,” Marandi told reporters during a press briefing.

Marandi also said that a 15-year-old tribal girl who was studying at Tiwari’s house was sent before the Child Welfare Committee.

The father of the 15-year-old girl has also written to the Chairperson, SC/ST Commission stating that her daughter was “illegally” taken by police and sent to the CWC.

In his complaint to the Chief Secretary, Sunil Tiwary said that as part of his duties and responsibilities, he has been highlighting the various acts of omissions, commissions and misdemeanors of this present ruling government of Jharkhand and the Chief Minister as the political head of the government.

“…That in one of these issues, I am an intervener in a case of Criminal Writ Petition being currently heard by Bombay High Court which relates to personal misconduct of Shri Hemant Soren, the Chief Minister of Jharkhand. That I have come to know from reliable sources that not only is there a possibility of filing false cases against me, but also that my life has come under threat…That I trust that you will instruct all concerned to desist from instituting false and fabricated cases against me and also instruct Jharkhand Police to immediately restore my security for the safety of my life,” stated the email sent to the CS on June 16 in form of a complaint by Tiwary.

JMM spokesperson Supriyo Bhattacharya said: “It seems Jharkhand’s first CM Babulal Marandi is not in politics anymore and has started being a lawyer for people, especially since he joined BJP…Police does its own work and in time they will also release a statement.”

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