DC Edit | Govt must see Revannas face full force of the law

The arrest of member of the Karnataka Legislative Assembly and former minister H.D. Revanna on the charges of kidnapping a woman, who was one of the hundreds of victims of alleged sexual abuse involving his son and JD-S MP Prajwal Revanna, comes as a crude reminder as to the extent Indian politics has become criminalised, although it is a longstanding phenomenon. The incident, along with the CBI issuing a blue corner notice for Mr Prajwal, sends a wake-up call to law enforcement agencies.

That Mr Revanna was arrested from the house of his father H.D. Deve Gowda, who held the office of the highest political executive in this country, shows up the reasons behind why he and his son, the prime accused in the case, have been able to dodge the arms of the law for so long. How outrageous it is that, despite warnings from its leaders in Karnataka about the young MP’s immoral behaviour, the BJP went ahead with the alliance with his party! It led to a scenario wherein Prime Minister Narendra Modi shared the dias with Mr Prajwal and asked the people to vote for him.

Though hundreds of women are alleged to have been exploited by the junior Revanna, only a few have come forward to register complaints. It must send a chill down the spine of all right-thinking that the politically powerful family of the accused thought fit to kidnap the victim in order to escape the clutches of the law. That the MP fled the country as soon as the news of the thousands of videos he had allegedly made of his victims started leaking is a reflection on the impunity with which such people operate while destroying the lives of others.

It defies logic that the alleged systematic torture of women that had been ongoing over the last few years was completely hidden from the eyes of the state police. The political patronage Mr Prajwal enjoyed must surely have seen to it that he was allowed to continue with his crass pursuits undisturbed. That his party was part of the alliances that ruled the state and the Centre had supposedly come in handy. It is now incumbent upon the state government, which has formed a special investigation team, to get on the case with all the seriousness that it demands.

If it is a shame that Prajwal was allowed to escape from the country, it’s all the more shameful if he is not brought home and made to face the law. The Union government has to take expeditious steps to ensure the compliance of the law by a citizen, however mighty they may be. The recent history of the BJP, which refused to act against its own MP who faced allegations of sexual abuse by sportspersons including Olympic medal-winners, does not inspire confidence. This party, in fact, made its own avowed commitment to Nari Shakti, or woman power, a farce by granting ticket to the son of the very same politician to contest the Lok Sabha election. If it wants to get a good result, therefore, it has no choice but to redeem itself and what better way to do it than by displaying some basic commitment to women’s rights and the rule of law?

( Source : Deccan Chronicle )
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