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Rapes, and kidnapping, are two of the crimes against women some politicians have. Here is a list of legislators accused of crimes against women.
One of the most infamous villains of the silver screen in India is a Zamindar or Panchayat leader in a village. The white-clad politician in stories set in urban India, who is also a womaniser and uses his power and position to silence his victims. This, until the hero comes along and rescues the damsel in distress bringing the politician to book. The stereotypical womaniser-villain has persisted through the decades in the movies across regions.
Equally prevalent is the myth of the all endowed hero, who establishes his manhood by overpowering his wife on the marital bed. Or it is the hero’s family who demand exorbitant dowry. The thread that unites all these characterisations is the long suffering, disempowered woman.
If you catch yourself thinking that such plots belong to the movies of the 60s and 70s, think again. India makes up one sixth of the world’s population and has the dubious distinction of being 95th among 129 countries in Gender Equality Index.
Recently released, UN’s Sustainable Development Goals for India reports that a staggering one in three women experience spousal violence. Whether popular culture reflects this or not, this is the reality for a majority of our female population.
As heroes or villains, similar to reel life, real world politicians hold enormous power. And as leaders of people, one would expect them to lead by example. Yet, our current Lok Sabha (2019) has a baffling 43% of MPs with criminal cases registered against them.
It is chilling to note that of the above, more than 68% are classified as serious crimes – rape, murder, kidnapping etc. Hailing from all parties and states, 19 MPs have rape cases registered against them. The figures for MLAs from different states in equally alarming.
Perhaps it is good that unlike movies, there is indeed no real alpha male to take on these villains, for there are way too many of them. This is a collective task for all the citizens of this country – the task of opening our eyes and becoming aware of whom we are voting for. To make the effort to know our netas, and to feel empowered enough to vote into power those with some semblance of respect for women.
So, to help us, with this process, here is a sample of politicians, sourced from across parties and regions, who have been charged with crimes against women. These politicians are all either members of Parliament or Legislative assemblies of different states, currently serving in office.
In a display of utter apathy towards the people of the nation, the party leaders turn a blind eye to the serious criminal acts that their chosen candidates have been charged with. This, despite the criminal has been to jail and is out on bail. In the rare case that a hue and cry is raised about it, every political party’s stance has been that the said candidate has yet to be convicted. You know, innocent until proven guilty?
Only when the party’s continued situation becomes untenable, do the party leaders act – like in the case of Kuldeep Singh Sengar.
Kuldeep Singh Sengar is a four-time MLA from Unnao, Uttar Pradesh. He was expelled from the Bhartiya Janta Party (BJP) a full two years after the heinous crime of rape of a minor was committed. Sengar was only arrested after the girl tried to immolate herself in front of the Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister’s residence. He sent to jail in 2018 for raping a 16-year-old, the year before. A Delhi court handed him a life sentence on 20 December 2019 for the rape
The victim and her family were made to go through a lot by Sengar and his cronies after she filed an FIR. Her father was beaten up while he was in judicial custody, he later succumbed to his injuries. The girl and her lawyer were critically injured in an accident that also killed two of her aunts.
Here is a list of other MPs and political leaders who have a list of crimes against them:
Member of Legislative Assembly: Rajasthan 2018
Constituency: Rajgarh Laxmangarh
Party: Indian National Congress (INC)
In April 2019, the 77-year-old Meena was charged with raping a widow he had befriended, twice and blackmailing her into silence with a video of the act.
Member of Legislative Assembly: Goa 2019
Monserrate was first arrested in 2016 for raping an underage girl. He has been charged two and a half years later in 2019 under POSCO for rape, criminal intimidation and wrongful confinement.
Member of Parliament: Lok Sabha 2019
Constituency: Ernakulam (Kerala)
Constituency: Attingal (Kerala)
Member of Parliament: LokSabha2019
Constituency: Trivandrum (Kerala)
All three MPs from Kerala were charged in March 2019, with sexually exploiting a woman entrepreneur – the main accused in the ugly Solar Panel Scam that rocked Kerala in 2013, its repercussions felt till date.
Member of Legislative Assembly: Madhya Pradesh 2018
Constituency: Ater (Bhind)
Constituency: Unnao (Uttar Pradesh)
The saffron clad self proclaimed saint has two rape charges against him. He spent time in Tihar Jail on charges of raping a school Principal in 2000. A few years, later a disciple at his ashram filed a complaint of rape against him.
Member of Parliament: Loksabha 2014
Constituency: Gautam Budhdha Nagar (Uttar Pradesh)
Mahesh Chand Sharma was arrested for sexually harassing his daughter-in-law in August 2019. Charges that he has denied citing property dispute as the real cause.
Katare was charged with rape and abduction of a 21-year-old journalist, with Katare counter filing a case of blackmail against her. The victim then alleged that she had been used as a tool by BJP MLA Arvind Bhadoriya against Katare, which of course he denied. The waters remain murky, not inspiring trust in either of the leaders.
Member of Legislative Assembly: Arunachal Pradesh 2019
Podrung was charged with allegedly raping a married doctor in Itanagar.
Constituency: Cooch Behar (West Bengal)
Pramanik who has only recently donned saffron, is charged with eleven non bailable cases, including assaulting a woman, criminal intimidation and murder.
Member of Legislative Assembly: Jharkhand 2019
Party: Jharkhand Vikas Morcha (Prajatantrik) [JVM(P)]
Yadav was charged with attempting to rape a party colleague and snatching Rs. 2 lakh from her. Subsequent to denial of anticipatory bail by courts, he surrendered and was sent to jail in July 2019. He has been out on bail since September 2019.
Member of Legislative Assembly: Odisha 2014
Party: Biju Janta Dal (BJD)
Sahu is also the President of the Kendrapara Credit Co-operative Society where he has been charged with harassing a female colleague and allegedly attempting to intimidate her.
Member of Legislative Assembly: Haryana 2019
Party: Haryana Lokhit Party
Kanda is out on bail currently, having been arrested in 2012 on charges of criminal conspiracy, criminal intimidation and abetting the suicide of one of the employees in his now defunct airlines, whose mother also subsequently killed herself.
Member of Legislative Assembly: Haryana 2014
Party: Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP)
Hussain was arrested under POSCO for abducting and raping a minor girl in 2016. He was also accused of raping a Dalit girl who later killed herself.
Member of Legislative Assembly: Tripura 2018
Party: Indigenous Peoples Front of Tripura (IPFT)
An FIR was filed against Tripura for raping his girlfriend repeatedly and deceiving her with promises of marriage. Eventually he was forced to marry her and the charges were dropped. A fresh complaint of domestic violence was laid by the victim against the MLA Tripura.
Member of Legislative assembly: Delhi 2015
Constituency: Malviya Nagar
Party: Aam Aadmi Party (AAP)
Bharti was charged in April 2019, with harassment, cheating and criminal intimidation in a domestic violence case filed by his wife based on a complaint she had laid in September 2015, when Bharti spent few days in jail.
Member of Legislative Assembly: Delhi 2015
Manoj Kumar was remanded in jail for seven days for assaulting a woman complainant. He previously served a three month jail term for other offences.
Constituency: Hindupur (Andhra Pradesh)
Party: Yuvajana Sramika Rythu Congress Party (YSRCP)
Madhav, former cop, has charges of rape, murder and criminal intimidation pending against him from 2012. There has been a fresh charge of criminal intimidation in 2019.
Constituency: Rajahmundry (Andhra Pradesh)
Margani Bharat was charged for domestic violence in January 2017 and again in 2018 for Dowry Harassment.
These are just a couple of dozen Netas who have no respect for women and do not think twice before harming one. This is only the tip of the iceberg.
An India that does not respect its women will not progress from strength to strength. Let us do our part in building a nation safe for us, women. Let us NOT vote into power those who rape, assault, harass and abuse us! Viva women!
Picture credits: Still from the movie Rakta Charitra
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