Activists protest against Kurien, demand his removal as Rajya Sabha Deputy Speaker

Last Updated: Thu, Feb 21, 2013 12:50 hrs

Hundreds of women's rights activists and students staged a protest demonstration outside Parliament on Thursday against Rajya Sabha Deputy Speaker P. J. Kurien over his alleged involvement in the Suryanelli gangreape case, demanding his removal from the office.

Led by the National Federation of Indian Women (NFIW), the protestors assembled on the gates of the Parliament and shouted slogans against Kurien, and demanding that he be removed from his post as Deputy Chairman.

"If an accused is sitting on the seat of the Deputy Chairman of the upper house, where the ordinance for bringing strong laws against sexual crimes is to introduced, it is a betrayal of the women of this country, it is an insult to our democracy and parliament. We had written a letter to the UPA chief Sonia Gandhi to remove Kurien from his office," said NFIW general secretary, Annie Raja.

The victim of the 1996 Suryanelli gangreape case had written to the Kerala Chief Minister Oomen Chandy, accusing Kurien as one of her tormentors and sought reinvestigation of the case consequent to an order by the Supreme Court.

Reportedly, the victim, a native of Suryanelli in Idukki district, was abducted and raped by different persons for around 40 days.

However, Kurien has rubbished the allegation and refused to step down, saying he was acquitted in three inquires and by the apex court six years ago. (ANI)

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