A special court has declined to discharge a police officer from charges of failing to record a rape complaint against BJP ex-MLA Kuldeep Singh Sengar in 2017 by a minor victim, officials said.
The court has listed the matter in January for framing charges against Kunwar Bahadur Singh, then posted as Circle Officer of Safipur, Unnao.
Two of his subordinate officers– former Makhi police station SHO D P Shukla and sub-inspector Digvijay Singh — have also been named in the CBI chargesheet, they said.
The Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) had lodged the case against the three officers under Section 166-A of the Indian Penal Code for not recording the victim’s complaint that she was raped by Sengar on June 4, 2017, the officials said.
If convicted, they can be sent to jail for a period ranging between six months to two years.
Even after her complaint to the Chief Minister’s Office remained unaddressed, the victim attempted to self-immolate in front of the chief minister’s residence in Lucknow on April 8, 2018, which snowballed into a major political issue in the state.
It is alleged that the victim in her application to Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath on August 17, 2017, had said she was raped by Sengar on June 4 that year and gang-raped by three other men on June 11, but the police did not take any action on her complaint.
The girl’s complaint was registered in chief minister’s grievance portal and forwarded to Kunwar Bahadur Singh for inquiry.
The victim had even appeared before Kunwar Singh and admitted that she had made the complaint, the CBI inquiry showed.
Kunwar Singh had forwarded the complaint to DP Shukla, who in turn handed it over to Digvijay Singh.
In the inquiry report submitted on August 24, 2017, Digvijay Singh said a case was already registered — referring to the gang-rape on June 11 — at Makhi police station and that a chargesheet had also been filed. However, it did not mention anything about the rape by Sengar.
“He (Digvijay Singh) further mentioned in the report that other allegations of the complainant are baseless and false and she is habitual of giving the applications,” the CBI has alleged.
A special CBI court has sentenced Sengar to life imprisonment for raping the minor who had come to his house seeking employment on June 4, 2017.
Based on the inquiry report submitted by Digvijay Singh, Kunwar Singh also submitted his report on November 25, 2017, in which he mentioned details of the action by police in connection with the June 11 gang-rape, but he, too, did not mention anything about the June 4 incident involving Sengar, the court has noted.
The CBI has alleged that the police officers did not ensure proper inquiry of the allegations, particularly related to the complaint against Sengar.
Without giving specific findings in his report to senior officers, Kunwar Singh termed the minor’s complaint against the then MLA “false and baseless”.
This recommendation was not only made in reference to the case sent from the Chief Minister’s Office but also in previous complaints filed by the victim, mentioning both incidents of rape, the CBI has alleged.
The probe agency has said the three officers did not perform their duties according to the statutory mandate even after receipt of the “first information of cognisable offence and had failed to record the information being public servants”.
Kunwar Singh had filed an application before a special court here to discharge him from the proceedings, saying he was not responsible for the actions of his junior officers — D P Shukla and Digvijay Singh.
“In the considered opinion of this court, there is ample material on record which prima facie discloses the commission of offence punishable u/s 166A IPC by the accused persons. Consequently, the plea on behalf of accused No. 1 (Kunwar Bahadur Singh) seeking discharge is declined,” the court held.
The court also directed to proceed with the matter of framing charges for the offence against all three officers.
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