Molestation case: Can’t act against Shabir Khan, says Speaker

Jammu: J&K Assembly Speaker Mubarak Gul on Tuesday said the House can’t take any action against former Minister of State for Health Shabir Ahmad Khan who is allegedly involved in molestation attempt on a lady doctor in Srinagar.
Gul was responding to MLA Engineer Rashid, who protested against Khan’s appearance in the Assembly during the ongoing budget session after police gave him permission to attend the House proceedings.
On Tuesday, as soon as Khan appeared in the House, Rashid stood up, trooped into the well and protested former’s presence there. “I want to know from government why not it takes action against Khan,” said Rashid.
He said had the alleged molestation attempt taken place “somewhere in India whole country would have stood up demanding punishment of the accused.”
“But here the government is playing with the dignity and honor of the people by not taking any action against Khan. I want this House to take action against him,” said Rashid.
He said if editor of Tehelka Magazine, Tarun Tejpal was arrested on similar charges why not Khan. “Government shielded him deliberately,” he said.
Responding to Rashid’s remarks, Speaker Gul said the House can’t take any action against Khan as the case is pending before the court. “Had there been any rule to this effect, the House would have definitely taken any action,” said Gul, adding that there are many MPs facing various charges but they attend Parliamentary proceedings.
On this, Rashid said the government does not abide by any rule while slapping PSAs on Kashmiri youth, but protect politicians like Khan. Rashid later staged a walkout from the House.
Earlier while Rashid was protesting, main opposition PDP, BJP and NPP members preferred to remain silent. PDP members had protested on the first day of the Assembly session demanding arrest of Khan.
Khan is accused of trying to molest a female doctor in his office chambers in Civil Secretariat Srinagar on January 28; he later resigned from the ministry and went into hiding to evade his arrest after a case was registered against him in Srinagar’s Shaheed Gunj police station.
The police have permitted Khan to attend the Assembly proceedings after the court granted him bail.