Punjab rape accused minister on the run surrenders

Punjab rape accused minister on the run surrenders
Accused on charges of rape, former Punjab minister in the Akali Dal-BJP government, Sucha Singh Langah, today presented himself before a Chandigarh court to surrender. Langah, who had been the state agriculture minister in Punjab under former chief minister Parkash Singh Badal, had been on the run since last Friday.

The police said Langah, 61, had gone underground after being booked for rape at the Gurdaspur city police station. Raids had been conducted at various places in Punjab to arrest the accused.

He was booked on a complaint by a 39-year old woman constable of the Punjab Police, who claims that she and Langah’s daughter once studied in the same class in college. The Chandigarh court while rejecting his plea asked him to surrender before the court in Gurdaspur. The victim in her complaint has alleged that she was sexually exploited and raped by Langah since 2009. The victim alleges that she was threatened by the former minister. The victim, who is a widow, has provided a video clip in a sealed pen drive as a proof of her claim. The police are investigating the veracity of the video clip.

A video clip of the “minister” has also gone viral on the internet. However, it is still unclear if the video on the internet is the same as the one provided by the victim to the police. Langah had earlier resigned from various posts he held in the Shiromani Akali Dal (Badal), including from the core committee of which he was a member and also as the president of the Gurdaspur district unit of the party. He has also resigned from the membership of Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC).

The developments that unfold is fodder for the Congress and the AAP ahead of the Gurdaspur by-poll on October 11. Being a national holiday today on account of Gandhi Jayanti, the surrender plea was put up before the duty magistrate. The former minister has been booked under sections of rape, extortion, cheating and criminal intimidation. Langah has termed the case against him as “political vendetta”. The former minister has been in several controversies in the past.
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