The lawyer of the woman and her minor daughter who have accused Uttar Pradesh minister Gayatri Prajapati of rape and sexual exploitation, on Sunday said his main concern was that his client’s family and witnesses were being threatened.
“I am not concerned about the passport or arrest (of Prajapati), my concern is that the victim’s family and witnesses are being threatened,” lawyer M Pracha said.
The lawyer’s assertion came a day after Uttar Pradesh Police issued non-bailable warrants against Prajapati and six others in connection with the rape charges.
Prajapati’s passport has been revoked for four weeks to prevent the absconding minister from attempting to flee the country.
On Friday, police initiated proceedings for a look out notice against Prajapati following reports that he may try to escape abroad to evade arrest.
Meanwhile, Uttar Pradesh governor Ram Naik has written a letter to chief minister Akhilesh Yadav seeking his stand on the continuation of Prajapati in the cabinet.
Naik said that after issuance of a non-bailable warrant against the minister, his continuation in the cabinet was against Constitutional ethics and norms of democracy.
Referring to media reports, Naik said Prajapati was facing serious charge of sexual exploitation of a woman and her minor daughter and his passport has been suspended for four weeks by the government.
On February 20, Prajapati moved the Supreme Court against its order of registering an FIR against him in the rape case.
Prajapati also sought protection from arrest and recall of the apex court’s earlier order.
The apex court had earlier directed Uttar Pradesh Police to file a status report in the case within eight weeks.
A 35-year-old woman has accused Prajapati of raping her when she met him three years ago. He is also accused of taking obscene photos of the woman and threatening to make the photos public and raping her for the past two years.
However, Prajapati claims it was a conspiracy of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in order to distract people’s attention from the assembly polls.
“It is a conspiracy against me. I don’t even know who the lady is. Since the government has ordered such probe, I would accept it gladly,” Prajapati had told ANI.
The woman, who hails from Chitrakoot, alleged that she was raped by Prajapati and others for two years on the pretext of getting a position within the Samajwadi Party.