COIMBATORE: The Coimbatore court has adjourned the hearing on an assault case that was registered following the Pollachi sexual abuse case, to February 20, as the petitioner counsel asked time to file an objection to the Central Bureau of Investigation's (CBI) closure report.
The CBI re-registered the sexual harassment case and the assault case, both finding their roots to the Pollachi sexual abuse case, on April 26, 2019. The brother of the victim had lodged a complaint with the police before the case was eventually transferred to the CBI.
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The case was registered against four suspects, namely - T Senthil, P Babu, R Mani alias Manivannan and Vasanthakumar. Later, one more person, Nagaraj alias Bar Nagaraj, was included in the case before being released from it.
The case has been under trial at Coimbatore Chief Judicial Magistrate (CJM) court and the CBI counsel submitted the closure report a month ago.
When it came for hearing on Thursday, the petitioner's counsel urged the court not to accept the report without consent from the complainant. Also, they asked time to register their objection on the closure report. Based on it, the court granted time and adjourned the hearing of the case to February 20.
"The investigation agency seems to think of the issue as something small. They have said that they have found, in their re-investigation, two sections or gangs are involved in the assault case and there is no need for the CBI to investigate the case. However, it happened following the sexual harassment case and it has a lot of connections with the sex racket. We have asked them to continue the investigation. The court has offered us time to file an objection petition against the CBI's case closure report," said the victim's advocate.
The case so far
On February 24, 2019, a case was registered against Thirunavukkarasu, Sabarirajan, Sathish and Vasanthakumar for sexually harassing a 19-year-old girl near Pollachi. The next day, the police arrested three persons and arrested Thirunavukkarasu on March 5, last year. Meanwhile, the teenager's brother lodged a complaint at Pollachi town police stating that he was threatened and assaulted by a four-member gang on February 26 seeking withdrawal of the case. The police registered a case and arrested T Senthil, Babu, Mani and Vasanthakumar. Nagaraj was added as the fifth member before being released by the court.
Both cases were transferred to the CBCID and they altered the sexual harassment case into rape charges on April 5, 2019. After Manivannan, another suspect surrendered before the court, both the cases were transferred to the CBI.