Sexual abuse case: SIT interrogates Prajwal Revanna; says likely to take potency test of Hassan MP

Prajwal was arrested after completing due process and legal procedures will follow, says Karnataka Home Minister; Hassan MP is before SIT to give fullest cooperation, says his advocate.
Prajwal Revanna being taken from SIT office to Bowring and Lady Curzon Hospital for medical tests in Bengaluru on Friday.
Prajwal Revanna being taken from SIT office to Bowring and Lady Curzon Hospital for medical tests in Bengaluru on Friday. (Photo | Hewin Byju)

BENGALURU: Suspended JD(S) MP Prajwal Revanna, facing allegations of sexually abusing several women, was interrogated after the Special Investigation Team (SIT) arrested him as soon as he landed at the Kempegowda International Airport in Bengaluru in the wee hours of Friday.

As reported earlier by TNIE, the 33-year-old MP, who arrived from Munich, was taken to the CID office for interrogation and will be produced before a Special Court, where the SIT is likely to seek custody for further interrogation.

The SIT is also contemplating a potency test on Prajwal in due course, sources said. A potency test is done to ascertain whether a rape accused is capable of committing sexual assault on victims.

The Special Court for Public Representatives will also hear the bail plea of Prajwal and his mother, Bhavani Revanna, on Friday.

Prajwal faces three sexual abuse cases, while his mother has sought anticipatory bail in an alleged kidnapping case. Though Bhavani is not accused in the case, SIT has reportedly desired to investigate her role.

In the same case, Bhavani's husband and Holenarasipura MLA HD Revanna, who is former Prime Minister HD Deve Gowda's son, was arrested and later released on bail. He is also accused of sexually harassing the cook of his house, who was also sexually abused by his son Prajwal.

Prajwal's advocate said that the MP was extending full cooperation to the SIT and that he had requested that there be no media trial.

Stating that Prajwal has been arrested in a case registered against him in Holenarasipura, Advocate Arun G said, "One has to wait to see what happens to the Hassan MP's bail application pending before the court."

"I went to speak to him. He has appealed to the media that he has come forward to cooperate with the investigation. So he has requested that there be no media trial. Let there be no negative campaign unnecessarily," Arun said.

Speaking to reporters after meeting Prajwal here, he said the Hassan MP is before the SIT to give the fullest cooperation.

"Prajwal said, I have come forward; the whole purpose of me coming to Bengaluru or before SIT is that I have to stand by my words. I have come forward. I will give the fullest cooperation; these are his words," he added.

Prajwal Revanna being taken from SIT office to Bowring and Lady Curzon Hospital for medical tests in Bengaluru on Friday.
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'Will provide survivors all kind of protection'

Meanwhile, speaking about Prajwal's arrest, Karnataka Home Minister G Parameshwara said further legal procedures will follow.

"Prajwal Revanna landed around 12.40 am-12:50 am from Germany's Munich. As there was an arrest warrant against him, SIT accordingly arrested him and took him into custody, and further legal procedures will be followed today. I'm yet to discuss this with our officials," he said.

Speaking to reporters here, he said, "As of now, the only information is that he (Prajwal) has come. He has been arrested and according to law, what action should be taken, like -- medical examination, presenting him before the judiciary. All those procedures will follow, including questioning him."

"...naturally, he should have cooperated to the arrest. His immigration papers were cleared and he was brought out (of airport). As he had a diplomatic passport, things happened easily, after completing all the due process, he was arrested," he added.

Asked if the government will appeal to more victims to come forward now that Prajwal has been arrested, Parameshwara said, "We have already said, those who have faced trouble from him to come forward and give complaints to SIT and police, and we will provide them all kind of protection. We will have to wait and see further developments."

To a question about reports that Prajwal had destroyed evidence in his phone and is claiming that he has lost the phone, the minister said that he was not aware of it and hadn't heard from SIT on the same.

Responding to a question about whether the arrest was delayed, the Home Minister said, if Prajwal was in the country or in the state, a team could have been sent to secure him, but as he was abroad, there were certain procedures to be followed.

"So through CBI, Interpol was informed and a Blue Corner Notice was issued against him. Those procedures were followed. Knowing all those things and thinking that in case, the Lok Sabha poll results go against him, the diplomatic passport would be withdrawn, and he will have to come back, he had issued a video statement that he would surrender on May 31. He has come now. It will help SIT in the investigation," he added.

The 33-year-old Prajwal, grandson of JD(S) patriarch and former Prime Minister HD Deve Gowda and the BJP-JD(S) alliance candidate from the Hassan Lok Sabha segment, is facing charges of sexually abusing many women. He has been booked in three cases of sexual assault so far.

There are also charges of rape against him.

The cases of sexual abuse came to light after a number of pen drives allegedly containing explicit videos involving Prajwal were reportedly circulated in Hassan ahead of the Lok Sabha polls there on April 26.

He had left for Germany on April 27, a day after Hassan went to the polls.

A 'Blue Corner Notice' seeking information on his whereabouts was issued by Interpol earlier, following a request by the SIT via the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI).

A Blue Corner Notice is issued by the international police cooperation body to collect additional information from its member countries about a person's identity, location or activities in relation to a crime.

A Special Court for Elected Representatives issued an arrest warrant on May 18 against Prajwal, following an application moved by the SIT. The Congress-led Karnataka government has urged the Centre to cancel his diplomatic passport.

The Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) has served a show-cause notice to Prajwal asking why his diplomatic passport should not be cancelled as sought by the Karnataka government in view of allegations of sexual abuse against him.

Prajwal Revanna being taken from SIT office to Bowring and Lady Curzon Hospital for medical tests in Bengaluru on Friday.
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Prajwal Revanna being taken from SIT office to Bowring and Lady Curzon Hospital for medical tests in Bengaluru on Friday.
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