UP Opposition demands suspension of Banda SP

Lucknow: Opposition parties Saturday demanded immediate suspension of Banda SP Anil Das who, they alleged, played a role in threatening the 17-year-old rape victim, and charged the Mayawati government with shielding him.

They claimed there was sufficient evidence of the SP's role in threatening and intimidating the victim by exerting pressure on her and justice would not be done till he is suspended.

"Though junior police officials and the jailor have been suspended, the official who was directing them to intimidate the victim for saving his political boss is so far appearing to be coming out of the case scot free," Congress spokesman Subodh Srivasatava said.

He alleged that the state government had shown similar attitude in the case of 12-year-old Divya, a student in Kanpur who died after being sexually assaulted, by saving DIG Prem Prakash.

Srivastava said continuance of the police chief in the district was not good for the security of the girl who faced a threat from supporters of MLA Purshottam Naresh Dwivedi who has made clear his intention of taking revenge from his detractors.

Samajwadi Party spokesman Rajendra Chaudhary alleged that the government did not want to offend senior police officials and wanted to take credit by punishing junior level officials.

"Perhaps, these senior level officials are in the know of secrets of this government and any punishment could become counter-productive," Chaudhary said.

BJP spokesman Vijay Pathak said even if junior level officials of the district were involved in threatening the victim, senior officials like the district magistrate and superintendent of police cannot shun their responsibility.

He said anger in the local people was growing over the government's apathetic attitude and the SP should have been suspended earlier itself.

The SP visited the jail against the rules and stayed there for over five hours continuously threatening the girl, Pathak said.

The Opposition leaders said it was strange that the CB-CID report on the case had not commented on the SP as there were evidences of his visit to the jail against the rules and intimidating the victim for withdrawing charges against the MLA.

They said now that the Supreme Court was looking into the case, the state government would not succeed in saving the high and mighty who were involved in shielding the culprit.