UP: Yogi Govt To Withdraw Rape & Abduction Case Against Former Union Minister Swami Chinmayanand
The Uttar Pradesh government has decided to withdraw a seven-year-old rape and abduction case lodged against the former Union Minister Swami Chinmayanand. He was accused of raping a girl in his ashram.
The reason for withdrawing the complaint is not mentioned. In 2011, the survivor had claimed that she was abducted and raped in the ashram. She was also given alleged death threats if she complained about this to the police. Swami Chinmayanand is a three-time BJP MP who served as the Union Home Minister under the Atal Bihari Vajpayee government.
Notably, the letter issued from the office of Shahjahanpur District Magistrate, dated March 9, 2018, says that the administration has decided to withdraw the case as per Section 321 of the Code of Criminal Procedure (CrPC). It also requests the public prosecutor to submit an application before the court.
This decision comes shortly after the Unnao rape case in which the BJP MLA is accused of raping a teenager, where the Yogi Adityanath government is being heavily criticised.
The Logical Indian take
This is not the first time that the Yogi Adityanath government has withdrawn cases against politicians.
There was a separate case against Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath for inciting violence with hate speech against a particular religious community. Yet in May 2017, the state government submitted before the Allahabad high court that it would not prosecute the CM in the case and had provided a 126-page document ‘counter-affidavit’ which listed the reasons why they will not do so.
On January 9, Uttar Pradesh Governor Ram Naik paved the way for withdrawing the 22-year-old case against Yogi Adityanath and 12 others by giving a push to the controversial Uttar Pradesh Criminal Law (Composition of Offences and Abatement of Trials (Amendment) Bill, 2017. The Governor cleared eight bills in the Vidhan Sabha, which included the bill of quashing 22,000 politically motivated cases across the state.
Last month, it was reported that the Yogi Adityanath government began the process of revoking 131 cases linked to 2013 Muzaffarnagar and Shamli riots, all of them filed against members of one community. This sudden turn of events was after CM Adityanath’s February meeting with a delegation of Khap leaders from Muzaffarnagar and Shamli, including BJP MP Sanjiv Balyan and the party’s Budhana MLA Umesh Malik, who had presented a list of 179 cases in the Muzaffarnagar riots and sought to withdraw them.
With incidents like these coming to light, it seems like the BJP-led Adityanath government is on a spree to erase the charges against their ministers. This raises some very important questions – are our politicians bigger than the law? Are laws different for the common man and for politicians?