Molestation case: Court reserves order on victim’s plea of stay

Srinagar: A local court here on Saturday reserved order on an application for stay of proceedings in a case involving molestation charges against Minister of State for Health and senior Congress leader, Shabir Ahmad Khan. Shabir has been accused of attempting to sexually assault a lady doctor here earlier this year.
Khan has been charged under RPC sections of 354 (assault or criminal force to woman with intent to outrage her modesty) and 509 (word, gesture or act intended to insult the modesty of a woman).
On April 3, police filed chargesheet before the Chief Judicial Magistrate Srinagar in Khan’s absence, claiming that he did not cooperate with it.
Subsequently, the court summoned him and he appeared on May 6.
Today, as the case came up before the CJM Virender Singh Bahu, Khan along with his counsel advocate Mohammad Abdullah Pandit appeared and filed objections to the application by the victim, seeking stay on proceedings pending outcome of a Special Leave Petition (SLP) at Supreme Court of India. The apex court has already issued notice to Khan and state.
At the same time, Chief Prosecution Officer (CPO) for prosecution also filed objections to the application in compliance to the direction by the CJM.
After hearing all the parties, the court reserved its decision on the application to be announced next week.
Khan had resigned as MoS Health on February 7, a day after police registered the case FIR (No. 09/2014) under RPC sections of 354 and 509 based on a complaint by the doctor.
Even as the CJM had issued arrested warrant against him, Khan remained in hiding for six days and appeared before the police only after interim bail was granted by the High Court.
The lady doctor had said that Khan “acted like a sexual predator” and tried to molest her in his office at Winter Secretariat here on January 28.