The Kerala police has registered a case of sexual harassment against the 73-year-old Congress MP from Kollam, N. Peethambara Kurup, for allegedly trying to molest film actor Sweta Menon.

Kollam police booked him under Section 354 and 354 (A) of the Indian Penal Code for sexually harassing the actor at a public function. Sweta, who was the guest of honour at the President’s Trophy boat race at Kollam on Saturday, had complained that she was harassed by Kurup and another person. The MP denied it saying it was totally false and also claimed that there was a conspiracy behind the allegation to politically harm him. On Sunday, however, Kurup apologised to the award-winning actor, who is also a celebrity television anchor, and her husband for causing any mental agony. Television footage showed that Kurup touched Sweta a couple of times during the public function.

Section 354 (A), which was recently made non-bailable with a view to checking sexual crimes against women, deals with sexual harassment, physical contact, advances involving unwelcome and explicit sexual overtures or any other unwelcome physical, verbal or non-verbal conduct of sexual nature.

basheer.kpm@thehindu.co.in

(This article was published on November 3, 2013)
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