The Uttar Pradesh government on Thursday moved the Chief Judicial Magistrate's court, Banda, for referring the rape case, allegedly involving a BSP MLA, to a fast track court.

Making this announcement, Chief Minister Mayawati said the Crime Branch of the Criminal Investigation Department, which was probing the rape of the minor girl, also filed its charge sheet in the Banda court.

Dismissing the Opposition attack as a conspiracy to defame her government and recounting the action taken in the case, the Chief Minister told a press conference here that she had ordered the arrest of the MLA, Purshottam Naresh Dwivedi, and three others on receipt of the CB-CID's preliminary report. The release of the girl was ordered on January 15 as, according to the CB-CID report, she had been falsely implicated in a theft case and sent to the Banda jail. Besides, Ms. Mayawati said, she directed the Principal Secretary (Home) to ensure the girl's security.

Subsequently, Atarra police station (in Banda) Circle Officer Rajendra Yadav, Station House Officer Radhey Shyam Shukla, inspector Abdul Jabbar, Banda ASP Lala Ram and jailor Gyan Prakash were suspended and departmental action was initiated.

Assailing the Congress, Ms. Mayawati asked why it was silent on the gang-rapes in Delhi and other atrocities on women in Haryana. Compared to Delhi, the ratio of crime against women was low in Uttar Pradesh. It was during the Congress rule that Phoolan Devi was compelled to take the law into her own hands following the excesses committed by feudal elements. Phoolan Devi, who later became an MP, was killed in Delhi during the NDA rule.

Ms. Mayawati asked why the Opposition was silent on the 1995 tandoor case, the 1999 Jessica Lal murder case, the 1990 case of molestation of a 14-year-old girl by the then Haryana Inspector-General, S.P.S. Rathore, and the 1996 Priyadarshini Mattoo case in New Delhi.

Keywords: Banda rape case