Gujarat’s Independent MLA Jignesh Mevani has been accused of assault and molestation by a woman police constable who was part of the team that brought him from Guwahati airport to Kokrajhar. Police sources said the constable has alleged that when they were passing through Assam’s Barpeta district, Mr Mevani had verbally abused her. He also made rude gestures and pushed her against the car seat, sources said.
The case was filed at the Barpeta road police station on April 21, in which Mr Mevani has been accused under laws dealing with obscene acts or words in public, voluntarily causing hurt, using criminal force to deter public servants from discharge of his duty and outraging of modesty.
The Dalit leader, who received bail in one case on Monday, was arrested immediately after in the second case, on which the police have given little details.
Mr Mevani was initially arrested from Gujarat’s Palanpur on Thursday after a complaint was filed against him by a leader of the Assam BJP over his tweets on Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
The 41-year-old who earlier said it was “vendetta politics by the PMO (Prime Minister’s Office)”, yesterday added that it was a “conspiracy” by the BJP and its ideological mentor, the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh.
“They did this to tarnish my image. They have been doing this systematically. They did it to Rohit Vemula, they did it to Chandrasekhar Azad, now they are targeting me,” Mr Mevani told reporters.
Charged with criminal conspiracy, offence related to place of worship, outraging religious feelings, and provocation, Mr Mevani received bail from a local court in Kokrajhar yesterday.
The fresh allegations against Mr Mevani are “atrocious” and there was no mention of the Barpeta case when he was in police custody for three days, Mr Mevani’s lawyer Angshuman Bora was quoted as saying by news agency Press Trust of India.
“We are absolutely surprised. There was not a whisper about the assault on officials when he was under police custody for three days. Suddenly after he was granted bail, he was shown as rearrested,” Mr Mevani’s lawyer said.
Mr Bora said they will move for his bail in Barpeta Court on Tuesday.