U'khand minister booked

Uttarakhand minister Harak Singh Rawat was on Tuesday booked for sexual harassment and criminal intimidation by Delhi Police on the basis of allegations of a 30-year-old woman in south Delhi.

Given the nature of the charges, the 54-year-old Uttarakhand MLA is likely to be arrested in the matter.

A case under sections 354 (assault or criminal force to woman with intent to outrage her modesty) and 506 (criminal intimidation) was filed against the Congress leaders after the woman submitted a written complaint with Safdarjung Enclave police station in south Delhi on Monday. She is a lawyer and is based in Delhi.

Police said the woman in her complaint claimed that she had gone to meet Rawat at a house in south Delhi’s Green Park in September, 2013. During their meeting, Rawat, who hails from Pauri Garhwal of Uttarakhand, allegedly touched her inappropriately and misbehaved with her.

It is alleged that after misbehaving with her, Rawat also threatened her with dire consequences if she reported the matter to police.

Police did not disclose the purpose of the visit. Investigating officers, however, added that the meeting between the two had been scheduled in advance. Police were yet to formally contact Rawat till Tuesday evening, but said he has has been booked.

Senior police officers have asked the victim about the delay in lodging the complaint. “She told us that given the profile of the person involved in the case and the nature, she was a bit apprehensive as she feared social ostracisation,” a source said.

Charge denied

Rawat, however, has denied the charges saying he is being implicated. Rawat suspects it to be planned by a gangster of western Uttar Pradesh.

In a statement, Rawat said the woman had approached him in September last year to get allotment of a piece of land in Haridwar to which he refused.

“She even tried to blackmail me,” Rawat said, adding he had also intimated then Uttarakhand Chief Minister Vijay Bahuguna and DGP Satyavrat. He claims he has enough proof in his support.

Rawat is seeking legal guidance and is considering lodging a counter FIR.

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