The Supreme Court on Wednesday granted anticipatory to Indian Youth Congress president Srinivas BV in an FIR registered against him by expelled woman party member for allegedly causing her mental agony. A bench of Justices BR Gavai and Sanjay Karol granted anticipatory bail to Srinivas to cooperate with the probe and asked him to appear before the police on May 22.
It also issued notice to the state of Assam and others and posted the matter for hearing on July 10. Taking into account the one-month delay in lodging the FIR, the apex court determined that Srinivas was entitled to interim protection.
Srinivas challenged the Gauhati High Court order rejecting his anticipatory bail plea. On May 5, the Gauhati High Court rejected the anticipatory bail plea of Srinivas in a case lodged by a former colleague and the ex-president of Assam Youth Congress accusing him of causing mental agony to her.
High Court had also refused to quash the FIR. In her complaint, the woman alleged that Srinivas persistently harassed her mentally by way of sexist remarks and slang words.
On her complaint, an FIR was registered to book Srinivas under Sections 352 (assault or criminal force), 354 (assault or criminal force to woman with intent to outrage her modesty) and 354A (1)(iv) (sexual harassment) of the Indian Penal Code. The woman had claimed that Srinivas had heckled her, held her arm, pushed and pulled her and used slang words during the party’s recent plenary session in Raipur. He had also threatened to ruin her career in the party if she complained against him, she alleged.
The alleged offence had occurred in Raipur in Chhattisgarh which was beyond the territorial jurisdiction of the Dispur police station, where the case was filed and Assam police had no jurisdiction to investigate or register an FIR for an offence which allegedly took place in Chhattisgarh, Srinivas said. The Congress had issued show cause notice to the woman and later expelled her from the primary membership of the party for six years for anti-party activities.