Millennium Post

I am innocent in eyes of god and court too, says Kurien

Three police investigations and the apex court had exonerated him of involvement in the 1996 Suryanelli rape case, Rajya Sabha Deputy Chairman P J Kurien said Tuesday and asserted that he was innocent in the eyes of god too.

‘Please note that I have been cleared by three different police investigation teams; besides the apex court exonerated me and the final discharge in the case following a private petition filed by the victim came from the Kerala High Court. In the eyes of god also I have done no wrong,’ Kurien said.

The horrific case in Suryanelli in Kerala's Idukki district took place in January 1996 when a 16-year-old girl was threatened, abducted and abused by a bus conductor.

She was brutally sexually assaulted for 45 days by 42 men. The victim had named Kurien as among those who exploited her in 1996.

The case is back in the spotlight after the Supreme Court on 31 January ordered a retrial, setting aside the acquittal in 2005 by the Kerala High Court of all but one of the 35 accused.

Exuding calm and confidence in the face of an aggressive Left opposition, the Congress leader said at the government guesthouse here that it was all about politics.

‘My name surfaced ahead of the then Lok Sabha election; and then at the next election came the girl's private complaint. Hence, there is no doubt that it is just nothing but politics.’

He added that he had not proceeded with the defamation case that he had won. The case had named then chief minister E K Nayanar and the victim.
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