Papu case: FIR seeks probe into parents’ role

Bhubaneswar: With both the father and mother of the alleged victim of sexual abuse at the hands of actor turned politician Tattwa Prakash Satpathy aka Papu Pom Pom having come out in the open seeking to bury the case against him, Friends Foundation Trust on Thursday filed a fresh complaint with the Mahila Police to bring the parents under the purview of investigation.

The non-government organisation, whose complaint led to the formal registration of an FIR against Papu followed by his arrest, said the role of the parents should be probed in the light of their misleading statements.

“The victim’s parents are giving confusing statements to the media regarding the minor girl’s appearance in court. This is also misleading the police in the case. We have filed a written complaint with the police asking for their inclusion in the probe into the case,” Friends Foundation Trust president Satya Ranjan Samal said.

The Trust also raised a question on the timing of their (victim’s parents) media statements coming as they did soon after the arrest of the actor, who unsuccessfully contested the 2014 general election on a BJD ticket.

“If the parents are claiming that their daughter was present at home on the day police recorded her statement, why they didn’t come out the very next moment to reject the claims of the police?” he asked.

Samal also suspected a ‘political game plan’ to let the actor go scot-free.

“Why are they (the parents) changing their statements? Why did they submit an affidavit in the court? We need to know who is behind the misleading statements of the girl’s parents,” stated he.

On the other hand, legal experts feel that the statement of the minor’s parents have further complicated the case, which may lead to rejection of bail of the accused, slated to be heard on July 11.

“Normally in such cases, the court rejects bail petition. The more complex the factors in this case are, the less chance there is of bail to the accused. If police feels that the parents are deliberately misleading the court, it has power to file a case of cognisable offence against them,” senior lawyer Siddhartha Das said.

Meanwhile, the lawyer of the minor girl’s parents said his clients have not yet received the police notice to depose before it. He however said that they will cooperate in the investigation.

The Mahila police station had served the notice yesterday asking the parents to appear in person within the next seven days.

On Wednesday, the teenage victim’s mother had reiterated the statement given by her father the day before that she was at home all day on June 28, the day police claims to have produced her in the court and recorded her statement under Sec 164.

On Tuesday, the girl’s father had told OTV, “My daughter has not gone to court….They (police) may have taken another girl to the court and enacted the whole drama….My daughter was at home all day on June 28.”

During the interview, the victim’s father also wanted the case against the actor to be withdrawn claiming a settlement had been reached amicably between them. Vouching for the character of Papu, the victim’s father had mentioned that the actor is a gentleman and speaks to him frequently.

“I don’t want the matter to go any further…My daughter is in a tender age….The way the society is changing, I want my daughter to excel in studies…If this case continues, it might hamper her studies and also she may be disturbed mentally,” he had maintained.