No one involved in gang rape will be spared: Home Minister

Minister flays BJP MLA Raghunandan Rao Madhavaneni for levelling false allegations, dragging name of innocent youth for political gains

HYDERABAD: Home minister Mohammed Mahmood Ali is in the eye of a storm on two different counts – one, of increasing number of rape and gangrape cases in Hyderabad and Telangana, and other crimes including murders and land grab cases, with the TRS members being involved, and two, personally, with his own grandson being allegedly an accused in the recent Jubilee Hill pub gangrape case.

Speaking exclusively to Deccan Chronicle, Mahmood Ali defended both his government and his grandson, saying that Hyderabad continued to be one of the safest metros in India and that, a few initial hiccups notwithstanding, no one guilty in the case would be spared and the the police would conduct a thorough and professional investigation.

He was also scathing in condemning the allegations by BJP Dubbak MLA Raghunandan Rao Madhavaneni, who he said was stooping to record lows in dragging an innocent into a controversy for political gains and not being mindful of destroying his reputation, besides saying the time had come to curb the pub culture.


Q. The country is watching the unfolding of the aftermath of the gangrape of a minor girl in a vehicle after a party at a pub in the city on May 28 evening. Your grandson, who is a major, has been accused of being one of the perpetrators. Is he guilty of the crime?

No, my grandson has nothing to do with the crime. Baseless allegations were made by a BJP MLA, who stooped to new record levels for political gain. My grandson is set to be married shortly. He was spending the day at home with family members and friends. We were all busy with the arrangements. The records are there, including the CCTV footage at my official residence. The police are thoroughly conducting the investigation and the truth will come out.

I know my grandson very well and have a good idea of who his friends are, what kind of social circle he hangs out with. He has been most unfairly dragged into the controversy.

Q. How do you respond to the allegations of the BJP MLA?

It is a shame if politicians play such games. We all have a collective role in ensuring public faith in their representatives. By making such an allegation, dragging an innocent and trying to tarnish the reputation of my entire family, he has done something shameful.

Q. What happened in this case, as per your information?

Some school students were conducting a party at a pub. It was non-alcoholic because they were minors but had permission for a party. This incident occurred after the party. The report given to police initially seems to be different. The police took some time registering the case because of the fact minors were involved, the report was not clear. Once it became clear, the action started. All accused are being arrested.

Q. There are allegations about the role of police too. Missing CCTV footage, delay in registering a case, a senior officer giving a clean chit to some of the allegedly accused?

I have spoken to the director-general of police (M. Mahendar Reddy). The police have been instructed to do a thorough investigation and spare no one. There will be no pressure on anyone and all guilty must be booked and acted upon as per law.

Q. Industries and IT minister K. T. Rama Rao has often said that Hyderabad is the safest city in the country, especially for women. The series of crimes against women is shaking such confidence. How do you defend your position as home minister over the deterioration of law and order situation and increasing number of serious crimes against women?

Hyderabad is still the safest city in the country, and women here are very safe. Each of these cases has had a peculiar set of socio-economic issues underlying. But show me a single case where anyone guilty of a crime has been spared, no matter who they are, and no matter how powerful they are. While we will increase and better our efforts to prevent such crimes, once something like this happens, which is very sad, I promise you our police department will not spare anyone. Every single guilty person in this case will be caught, tried and punished as per law.

But we must also introspect as a society to make a larger difference. Every stakeholder’s duties and role must also find a place in this discussion. We have to question the role played by the internet, social media and mobile phones. A larger contextual reform is needed.

Q. Are pubs becoming a problem for the city and our law and order situation?

As an IT destination and a metro with great tourist interest, we do have a liberal pub policy but we have to relook at it. They have pushed the limit beyond our ability to accept. Youth are our future and we cannot allow these things to get out of hand. I will personally speak to Chief Minister K. Chandrashekar Rao about the need for some changes. We won’t allow such incidents to ever repeat.

Q. Will any action be taken against the pub?

Police are looking at all their records and their role and complicity. If found guilty, we will take the strongest action.

Q. Finally, do you reiterate justice will be delivered in this case?

Absolutely. 100 per cent. No one will be spared, no matter who they are.

Next Story