NGO director jumps to death after rape allegations

Was booked for allegedly raping a 25-year-old girl in September

December 19, 2013 11:49 am | Updated May 12, 2016 10:08 am IST - NEW DELHI

A 55-year-old executive director of a non-government organisation, who was facing rape allegation, allegedly jumped to death at his Vasant Kunj residence here on Wednesday morning.

The incident took place less than a day after Dr. Khurshid Anwar, executive director of the Institute for Social Democracy (ISD), was booked for allegedly raping a 25-year-old girl in September this year. The allegations have been refuted by Dr. Anwar’s colleagues who described them as false and motivated.

One of Mr. Anwar’s neighbours said that around 10-45 a.m. some domestic helps saw him jumping from the terrace of the three-storey building and raised an alarm. Mr. Anwar lived alone on the second floor of the house in B-9 block of Vasant Kunj. The police soon reached the spot and moved a seriously injured Dr. Anwar to the All-India Institute of Medical Sciences where he was declared brought dead.

No suicide note was found at the spot but Dr. Anwar’s colleagues said that he had filed a defamation case against the girl after being targeted via an “online smear campaign”.

They alleged that a video in which the girl accused Dr. Anwar of raping her was circulated on the Internet in a bid to defame him.

In the video recorded at a social activist Madhu Kishwar’s house six days after the incident, the girl is learnt to have narrated that on September 12, she along with some of her friends and colleagues went to a party hosted by Dr. Anwar at his residence. She further alleged that as she felt giddy after consuming sedative laced alcohol, Dr. Anwar asked her to stay back. She went on to add that Dr. Anwar raped her after everyone else left the house.

Countering the allegations, Dr. Anwar’s colleagues maintain that he had, in fact, insisted that the girl leave his house with her colleagues but they themselves decided to let her stay back.

Ms. Kishwar said that ISD launched its own probe and sent a copy of the video to the National Commission for Women. After examining the video and finding corroboration from the girl’s co-volunteers, the NCW wrote to the Delhi Police on December 14. Three days later, a case was registered at Vasant Kunj (North) police station.

Soon after the registration of the case, the matter was aired on television channels which upset Dr. Anwar who saw it as a character assassination attempt, said his colleagues.

Sources said Mr. Anwar and the girl came in contact when she was participating in the post December 16 gang rape protests last year and the two befriended each other.

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