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Suspended IAS officer Narain claims was in Delhi on day of alleged rape

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New Delhi, Oct 18: Suspended from service over the charge of sexually assaulting a 21-year-old woman in Andaman and Nicobar Islands, senior IAS officer Jitendra Narain has written to the Union Home Ministry claiming he was in Delhi on an official tour on April 14 when the first alleged assault took place.

In the October 5 letter, a copy of which has been seen by PTI, the officer stated that he was in Delhi between April 11, 2022, and April 18, 2022 and has given details of his tour.

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The first alleged sexual assault, according to the woman’s complaint, took place on April 14, 2022, and the second on May 1, 2022.

In the letter, he provided file notings regarding travel outside Port Blair, flight details including PNR Number and boarding pass and bills of his stay at Andaman Nicobar Bhawan in New Delhi to buttress his claim.

Narain, who was then the chief secretary of Andaman and Nicobar Islands, claimed that on May 1 he was engaged in “some personal legal issues” relating to a friend who had arrived in Port Blair that morning. He provided the travel details of his friend as well.

He said his call data records and cellphone locations may be looked into to confirm his claim.

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However, there was no confirmation from the Union Home Ministry on the letter.

“The allegations are completely untrue for the simple reason that they are impossible in the alleged dates and time spans,” he wrote.

“I also know that the police authorities are fully aware of the circumstances of those two dates, and yet are allowing this false and vexatious prosecution to continue at the behest of certain powerful individuals in satisfaction of vested interest,” he claimed in the letter.

Reached for comments, Narain said he won’t speak on the “absurd” allegations.

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But sources close to him confirmed that he had sent a detailed representation to the home ministry and other authorities, denying the charges.

Narain alleged that he was being framed because he had taken disciplinary action against an employee.

The government on Monday suspended Narain, who is presently posted as the chairman and managing director of the Delhi Financial Corporation.

A Union home ministry statement said the government is committed to ensuring zero-tolerance towards the acts of indiscipline by its officials irrespective of their rank and status, especially regarding incidents involving women’s dignity.

The ministry received a report on Sunday from the Andaman and Nicobar Police regarding the alleged sexual assault.

As the report indicated the possibility of grave misconduct and misuse of the official position on the part of Narain, an IAS of the AGMUT cadre of the 1990 batch, Home Minister Amit Shah directed immediate strict action against the officer concerned as per the law.

Accordingly, Narain has been placed under suspension with immediate effect and disciplinary proceedings have been ordered against him, the statement issued on Monday said.

An FIR has been registered and action in the criminal case is being taken separately by the Special Investigation Team of the Andaman and Nicobar Police.

As per the allegation of the woman, she was gang-raped by two officials, including Narain, in Andaman and Nicobar Islands at his official residence.

Following the allegation, a Special Investigation Team has been constituted, headed by a Senior Superintendent of Police, for investigation and a case has been registered at the Aberdeen police station.

The woman alleged that the other officer who was involved in the rape was Labour commissioner R L Rishi and they indulged in the alleged crime on two occasions.

Narain joined as chief secretary of Andaman and Nicobar Island in March 2021. (PTI)

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The Hills Times
The Hills Timeshttps://thehillstimes.in/
The Hills Times, a largely circulated English daily published from Diphu and printed in Guwahati, having vast readership in hills districts of Assam, and neighbouring Nagaland, Meghalaya, Arunachal Pradesh and Manipur
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