Kerala ex-minister probed, charged for molestation

March 30th, 2008 - 6:20 pm ICT by admin  

Chennai, March 30 (IANS) A Tamil Nadu police team investigating charges of molestation against former Kerala minister P.J. Joseph has submitted its final report in a judicial magistrate’s court here. Court sources said a special team led by Assistant Commissioner T. Kuppusamy, set up to investigate the case, submitted its probe findings Friday and the charge sheet against the minister is now ready.

Television anchor Lakshmi Gopakumar had in her complaint to the Chennai airport police accused Kerala’s former public works minister of sexual harassment onboard a Kingfisher Airlines flight from Chennai to Kochi Aug 3, 2006.

Joseph is the chairman of Kerala-Congress (Joseph) and an ally of the Left Democratic Front government in Kerala.

The Tamil Nadu police Oct 3, 2006 registered a case under the Tamil Nadu Prohibition of Harassment of Women Act, 1988, against him.

Beside the Chennai airport police investigation, Kerala Chief Minister V.S. Achuthanandan asked Inspector General of Police B. Sandhya to investigate the charges made by the complainant and submit a report to the government.

In her report late August 2006, the investigating officer said the victim stood by her allegations and “it was possible that such an act might have occurred onboard”. The report ruled out any conspiracy theory, as suggested by Joseph.

Joseph alleged investigation was “incomplete”, but after the report he resigned from office in September 2006.

Meanwhile, Kerala-Congress (Joseph) has called a meeting Monday in Kottayam in Kerala to discuss the issue.

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