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Suryanelli rape: Congress defends Kurien in Rajya Sabha

February 26, 2013 17:13 IST

The government on Tuesday defended Rajya Sabha Deputy Chairman P J Kurien, who has been under attack in connection with the Suryanelli rape issue, with Parliamentary Affairs Minister Kamal Nath pointing out that police inquiries and courts have cleared him of all charges.

"A section of the media and some political members have sought to drag Rajya Sabha Deputy Chairman Kurien in a rape case. It has emphatically been stated that he has never been accused in the Suryanelli rape case," Nath said while making a statement in the
Rajya Sabha.

When the minister rose to defend Kurien, Communist Party of India – Marxist members staged a walk-out, with its senior leader Sitaram Yechury saying Kurien should defend himself.

"Let him (Kurien) come and defend himself. We cannot accept the executive defend the officer of legislature and undermine the sanctity of the Constitution," Yechury said.

Nath insisted that he was making a statement upon a direction by the Chair.

He narrated the sequence of events related to the 17-year-old Suryanelli rape case since the time the FIR had been filed -- about how several police enquiries and judicial processes had ‘acquitted’ Kurien of all charges.

Kurien, a senior Congress leader from Kerala, has been under attack, particularly from Left parties, after the victim demanded recently that he be made an accused in the case.

Kurien recently met Rajya Sabha Chairman Hamid Ansari and Congress president Sonia Gandhi to explain his position.    

He also wrote a letter to all Rajya Sabha members on the eve of the start of the budget session on February 21, insisting that there was no case against him and the allegations against him were false. 

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