The Tamil Nadu Crime Branch CID on Wednesday took over the investigation into the case of sexual harassment of a 19-year old woman in nearby Pollachi, which has drawn public outrage. In Pollachi sex scandal, more than fifty women were lured and sexually harassed by a gang of four and the acts were video-graphed.
What is Pollachi sexual harassment case?
On 24 February, a 19-year-old Pollachi woman, filed a complaint with the local police station, alleging that four men sexually assaulted her. In her complaint, she said that the accused – Thirunavukkarasu, Sathish, Sabarirajan and Vasanthakumar – stripped her in a car and made a video of the act. The incident reportedly happened on February 12. The four men shot a video of the act and blackmailed her using the visuals and tried extortion. The woman, who managed to free herself from the gang lodged a complaint with police on February 24.
A fifth accused, ‘Bar’ Nagaraj, an AIADMK functionary, who was expelled by the party on March 11, has been added to the FIR. The police investigation revealed that the accused had also assaulted and filmed other young women. Police officials claim the men sexually harassed over 50 women over the span of two years across Tamil Nadu. Police are also reportedly checking whether young women who had killed themselves in Pollachi, over the past one year, did so due to being sexually assaulted by the same men. The police have asked other survivors to come forward with their experiences.
While three of the accused were arrested on 24 February, the main accused, Thirunavukkarasu, was apprehended on 5 March. An FIR filed has been against the men under Sections 354(A) (sexual harassment), 354 (B) (assault or use of criminal force to woman with intent to disrobe) of the Indian Penal Code, 66(E) (Punishment for violation of privacy) of Information Technology Act, 2000 and Section 4 of Tamil Nadu Prohibition of Women’s Harassment Act. On 12 March, all four accused were booked under the Goondas Act, which authorises detention up to a year.
(Inputs from PTI)