Kochi: Kerala Health Minister KK Shailaja on Monday defended a senior leader from ruling party CPI(M), stating that he did no wrong in revealing the name of the Thrissur gangrape survivor.
The survivor had alleged that four friends of her husband, including a CPI(M) leader had raped her.
In a shocking statement, Shailaja said former Speaker Radhakrishnan’s act of taking the rape survivor’s name was ‘no big deal’.
"If former Speaker Radhakrishnan has taken the victim's name, you may want to make a big deal out of it, I don't think there is anything wrong with it. Victims, their parents usually want to hide their names because of the shame associated, but they are not the ones who have done anything wrong,” the minister was quoted as saying.
Naming a rape survivor carries a punishment of two years in prison.
CPI(M) district secretary Radhakrishnan had said that if the survivor can name people who have not been proved guilty, she can also be named. This had led to protests from the Opposition, which called for action against Radhakrishnan.
“Radhakrishnan is not above the law. Revealing the victim's name can entail two years of imprisonment. Action should be taken against him”, Kerala Congress chief VM Sudheeran said.
State BJP president Kummanam Rajasekharan said there had been a "criminal lapse" by the CPI(M) leader.
Last week, the 32-year-old woman addressed a press conference with her face covered, with her husband and activists by her side. She had claimed that when she went to the police to lodge a complaint, they had humiliated her by asking which of the four men she had ‘enjoyed’ the most.
The politician she has named, a councillor, has accused the woman of lying and getting back at him for demanding money he had loaned to the couple.
The politician has been suspended by his party after CM Pinarayi Vijayan stepped in, and a probe is underway....