'No Proof Against MLA Ravidranath Tripathi': UP Police Clears BJP leader, 4 Sons Of Gang Rape Charges
The Uttar Pradesh Police on Saturday gave a clean chit to the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) MLA Ravindranath Tripathi in a 2017 rape case of a 40-year-old woman.
SP Bhadohi Ram Badan Singh in a press conference said: "On February 10, an FIR was registered against BJP MLA Ravindranath Tripathi, his sons and nephews for allegedly raping a woman repeatedly between 2016 and 2017. After conducting detailed investigation and recording statements of people involved in this case, the charges against the BJP lawmaker, his three sons and two nephews came out to be false."
"We have given them clean chit while the allegations of rape against Sandeep Tiwari, the third nephew of the BJP leader are true according to our investigation. The police have arrested him," police further added.
Out of the seven accused, six including Ravindranath Tripathi have been cleared of any charges by the police.
The victim in her FIR had accused the MLA's nephew of trying to establish physical relations with her on the excuse of marrying her in 2016. During the 2017 UP Assembly polls, she alleged that she was asked to stay in a hotel in UP's Bhadohi where Tripathi, his three sons and two other nephews repeatedly raped her.
The woman also alleged that she was threatened and forced to undergo an abortion. After the police statement, the woman had also claimed that the police is trying to protect the BJP MLA because he belongs to the ruling party.
Tripathi, however, rejected all the allegations against him after an FIR was registered at a local police station, calling it an attempt to defame him. In a social media post on February 10, Tripathi claimed that he was "ready to undergo any investigation in the case".
Calling it an attempt to target him by the opposition, Tripathi said: "I had complained to Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath about his illegal mining operations and other acts of corruption. Since then, he had been targeting me."
Ravindranath Tripathi, former Bahujan Samaj Party earlier, had joined the BJP just before the 2017 state assembly elections.
This is not the first time that a BJP MLA has been given a clean chit for committing something as harrowing and horrifying as raping a woman. The Allahabad High Court granted bail to former Union Minister and BJP Leader, Chinmayanand in a sexual assault case on February 3. The politician was arrested for alleged sexual assault on a 23-year-old law student at a college owned by Chinmayanand in Shahjahanpur.
Several other BJP MLAs and even cabinet members have earlier been accused and booked for rape and other sexual offences. Some of them include Bhojpal Singh, Venkatesh Maurya and Nihal Chand.