SC takes cognisance of Chinmayanand row

Group of lawyers raised issue of missing student before apex court; case to come up for hearing today

Updated - November 28, 2021 10:15 am IST

Published - August 30, 2019 01:44 am IST - New Delhi

New Delhi: BJP MP Yogi Adityanath (R) with former party  MP Chinmayanand Swami outside Parliament in New  Delhi on Tuesday. PTI Photo by Subhav Shukla(PTI8_17_2010_000108B)

New Delhi: BJP MP Yogi Adityanath (R) with former party MP Chinmayanand Swami outside Parliament in New Delhi on Tuesday. PTI Photo by Subhav Shukla(PTI8_17_2010_000108B)

The Supreme Court on Thursday took cognisance on its own over reports of a woman student going missing after levelling allegations of harassment against former Union Minister and BJP leader Swami Chinmayanand.

The issue, which was mentioned before the apex court on Wednesday by a group of lawyers urging it to take cognisance in the matter, would come up for hearing on Friday before a Bench of Justices R. Banumathi and A.S. Bopanna.

 

Harassment complaint

The Shahjahanpur police had on Tuesday lodged an FIR against Mr. Chinmayanand after the student went missing. Her father had filed a complaint with the police accusing Mr. Chinmayanand of sexually harassing her, a charge refuted by the BJP leader’s lawyer who claimed it was a “conspiracy” to blackmail him.

 

The woman’s father alleged that she has gone missing at the behest of the 72-year-old BJP leader, who heads Mumukshu ashram. The woman is a postgraduate student in one of the colleges run by the ashram.

The group of lawyers, in a letter addressed to Chief Justice of India Ranjan Gogoi, had requested him to take suo motu action based on media reports that the student has been missing for the past three days.

“Your lordships, we the undersigned members of the legal fraternity and practising lawyers of this court are extremely disturbed and concerned about the wellbeing of the girl concerned. We as a society cannot allow another ‘Unnao case’ to happen. This court has been interfering in letter petitions when it comes to protection of human rights,” the letter read.

It urged the court to take cognisance in the matter and issue notices to the Chief Secretary and Director General of Police of Uttar Pradesh as also the principal of the college, where the woman is studying, so that immediate action can be taken to trace her, and give protection to the woman and her family.

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