Tribune News Service
Chandigarh, December 12
The Panchkula police will go ahead with investigations against MDC SHO Ravi Kant and Home Guards volunteer Jashan Pal despite the victim, salon manager, giving them a clean chit in her statement under Section 164 of the CrPC.
Ironically, SHO Ravi Kant was felicitated by the government for his “exemplary services” recently.
Home Minister Anil Vij today said the police would also investigate whether the woman was pressurised to give the cops a clean chit.
The police had suspended Kant and arrested Pal after a complaint accompanied with a video alleged that the SHO had been extorting money from a salon located in the Mansa Devi Complex (MDC) area through Home Guards volunteer Jashan Pal who was seen molesting the salon manager while accepting extortion money.
“A complaint, along with the CCTV footage of the Jashan’s act, had come to the DGP. The SHO was immediately consigned to the Police Lines and the Home Guards volunteer was arrested for molestation,” said Vij.
However, when the salon manager’s statement under Section 164 of the CrPC was recorded before the court, she said Jashan was a family friend and the money paid to him was not bribe, but it was given to him for some work.
Vij, however, said police investigation would continue despite the woman’s statement.
Answering a question, Vij said the probe would also include the fact whether the woman was pressurised to retract from the allegations.
Regarding felicitation of SHO Ravi Kant, Vij said the government could not be blamed for this since it was the district administration that recommends the names of officials to be felicitated on Independence Day or Republic Day.
Panchkula Commissioner Saurabh Singh claimed that the police followed the laws relating to crimes against women by recording the woman’s statement without delay.
He said the amended law prescribes that in cases of sexual offences against women, judicial magistrate should record the statement of the victim as soon as the offence is brought to notice of the police.
Singh dismisses suggestions that the victim’s statement will weaken the case, as, he said, the police will investigate the case from all angles and the allegations of bribe and extortion are also there anyway.
Meanwhile, Haryana DGP Manoj Yadava has ordered an inquiry by Bharti Arora, IGP, to verify the fairness and objectivity of the investigation conducted by the Panchkula police in a case of alleged extortion of money by the SHO and the Home Guards volunteer.
An official spokesperson said a complaint was received in the office of the DGP, Haryana, in which certain allegations were levelled against the MDC SHO and one Home Guards volunteer working in the police station. On receipt of the complaint, the Commissioner of Police, Panchkula, was directed to take necessary action on the complaint leading to registration of a criminal case at the MDC police station.
The police acted swiftly and arrested the Home Guards volunteer against whom allegations of extorting money and molesting the manager of the beauty parlour had been levelled. Further, Inspector Ravi Kant, SHO of the police station, whose name figured in the FIR, was immediately transferred to the Police Lines, Panchkula, to ensure objectivity and fairness of the probe. He was subsequently placed under suspension.
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