Friday, September 17, 2021
HomeEditorialCriminals are not strangers in Indian politics: Part I

Criminals are not strangers in Indian politics: Part I

People have once again started coming on the roads as they came for Nirbhaya. This time it was for a 16-year-old girl who was raped by Kuldeep Singh Sengar, the BJP lawmaker from Uttar Pradesh. Opposition leaders led a candlelight vigil at midnight in Delhi to protest against the growing crimes against women amidst outrage over the Unnao and Kathua gang-rape incidents. India has so many goons who are responsible for the Unnao and Kathua incidents. At least 20 men, accused of raping women, contested Indian elections in the last five years. Though, Kuldeep is not the first politician to commit such heinous crime, if we look at Indian politics, many rape accused are blessed with ministry and political patronage.

In 2013, then finance minister of Madhya Pradesh — Raghavji Lakhamsi Savala was accused of sexually abusing a male domestic help. The victim in his report mentioned that the minister had sodomised him with the lure of a permanent government job. At that point of time Raghavji was 79 years old. As soon as the CD surfaced, Raghavji had to resign from his position.

In 2013, a woman from Jaipur accused former Rajasthan minister Babulal Nagar of sexually exploiting her. She alleged that the minister promised her a government job and then sexually assaulted her. The woman alleged that the minister had threatened her and had asked to keep her mouth shut. Nagar had to resign in the wake of these allegations. In 2012, Singhvi, Rajya Sabha MP and spokesperson of the Congress, who is also one of the country’s leading lawyers, was allegedly caught in a compromising position in his Supreme Court chamber.

Mukesh Kumar Lal, the driver of Singhvi, was accused of filming the CD secretly and blackmailing Singhvi to make the CD public. As a result, Singhvi had to resign as the Congress spokesperson and chairman of the parliamentary standing committee on law and justice.

Air hostess Geetika Sharma became the prey of former Haryana minister Gopal Kanda’s lust. Geetika was employed with Kanda’s MLDR Airlines. But after the alleged sexual harassment by Kanda, she committed suicide in 2012. In her suicide note, Geetika alleged that Kanda was responsible for compelling her to end her life. Kanda was arrested and lost his job.

The 2011 Bhanwari Devi sex scandal, in which the then Rajasthan water resources minister, Mahipal Maderna, was involved, rocked the Ashok Gehlot government. Bhanwari Devi was an auxiliary nurse and midwife (ANM). She went missing and the case came into the limelight when her husband accused Maderna of kidnapping her.

Bhanwari Devi allegedly had tried to strike a deal with Maderna in which she had demanded monetary benefits in return for a video clip that showed her in compromising positions with Maderna and few other people. Eventually, Maderna was dismissed from the Gehlot government. Narayan Datt Tiwari, a veteran Congress leader and former chief minister of Uttar Pradesh and Uttarakhand, was serving as the Andhra Pradesh governor in 2009. He was 85 years old at that time. Tiwari quit after allegations about his involvement in a sex romp in the Raj Bhawan surfaced.

In 2008, Rohit Shekhar Tiwari filed a paternity suit claiming Tiwari to be his biological father. The court ordered that DNA mapping of Tiwari be done. The DNA test results released by the court on Friday, July 27, 2012, established that Tiwari is the biological father of Rohit Shekhar Tiwari.

In 2005, Sanjay Joshi, general secretary of the BJP, came into the spotlight for the sex scandal that hit the party in the midst of its silver jubilee celebrations. He once used to be the RSS’ representative in the BJP, but had to sacrifice the general secretary’s post following the alleged sex scandal. He was later re-inducted in the party but the disgrace never allowed him to regain his authority and command. Former Uttar Pradesh minister Amarmani Tripathi was jailed for life for killing poetess Madhumita Shukla who was carrying his unborn child and had refused to abort it despite repeated threats. In 2003, Madhumita was gunned down. The murder had created an uproar in Uttar Pradesh, leading to Tripathi’s exit from the Mayawati Cabinet.

In 2003, the then Uttrakhand revenue minister was accused by an Assamese woman, Indira Deori alias Jenny, to be the father of her newborn child. The political storm that followed her allegation lost steam when the CBI tabled its report to the court stating that the DNA of the child did not match that of the Congress leader.

In 1999, Bihar witnessed a high profile sex scandal related to Sadhu Yadav, the brother-in-law of former chief minister Lalu Prasad Yadav. The scandal involved the murder of a girl Shilpi Jain and her friend Gautam. Both Shilpi and Gautam were friends of Sadhu. Their bodies were found inside a car in a semi-nude condition. A CBI probe concluded that the lovers committed suicide by consuming poison. This was contrary to the media reports that claimed she was raped and when Gautam came to her rescue, the lovers were made to consume poison.

In 1997, the then deputy chief minister of Maharashtra, Gopinath Munde’s image took a battering after his affair with Tamasha dancer Barkha Patil came out in the open. Even the then Shiv Sena chief Balasaheb Thackeray joked about it in a party meeting saying, “I told Munde jab pyaar kiya toh darna kya”. Munde denied these allegations and blamed his political rivals but also refrained from filing cases against the newspapers that were covering the affair thoroughly.

In 1994, a group of influential politicians, businessmen and officials were accused of running a forced sex racket on a massive scale and for a long time in Jalgaon town. The gang lured school- and college-going girls into their trap, raped them and recorded the acts which were then used to blackmail the girls. Two Congressmen were arrested but were acquitted later for the lack of proof.

The Bobby murder case, in 1980, was one in which several Youth Congress leaders, including the son of a former speaker, was said to have been involved.

Bobby worked as a telephone operator in the secretariat. She was found murdered under mysterious circumstances. The then senior SP of Patna, Kishore Kunal, an upright IPS officer, got the body of Bobby exhumed so as to nail the real culprits.

As he was about to book the son of a top Congress leader holding a constitutional post, the then Bihar Chief Minister Jagannath Mishra gave him the marching orders. Once Kunal was shunted out of Patna, the murder case was given a quiet burial.

(This is the first part of the editorial and remaining portion will continue on Sunday.)

(Any suggestions, comments or dispute with regards to this article send us on [email protected])

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Dr Vaidehi Taman
Dr Vaidehi an Accredited Journalist from Maharashtra is bestowed with Honourary Doctorate in Journalism, Investigative Journalist, Editor, Ethical Hacker, Philanthropist, and Author. She is Editor-in-Chief of Newsmakers Broadcasting and Communications Pvt. Ltd. for 11 years, which features an English daily tabloid – Afternoon Voice, a Marathi web portal – Mumbai Manoos, monthly magazines like Hackers5, Beyond The News (international) and Maritime Bridges. She is also an EC Council Certified Ethical Hacker, Certified Security Analyst and is also a Licensed Penetration Tester which caters to her freelance jobs.

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