Hyderabad: A woman journalist on Monday alleged that she was drugged and raped by BJP’s Telangana unit spokesman Madavaneni Raghunandan Rao. The woman, who is in her mid-30s , claimed Rao raped her when she approached him to file a maintenance case against her husband. The BJP leader, however, has denied the allegation stating they are baseless and politically motivated.
The victim moved the Telangana State Human Rights Commission (SHRC) after Rao threatened her against going to the police. The commission, taking note of the allegations, directed the RC Puram police of Cyberabad commissionerate to initiate actions based on the findings.
The woman, a resident of RC Puram, said she had disputes with her husband in 2003, due to which she had filed a harassment complaint against him at RC Puram police station and a case had also been registered then. After that, she had approached the BJP leader, who was an advocate, to file a maintenance case against her husband at the Sangareddy court.
On 2 December, 2007, Rao called her to his office, which is located in the premises of his residence, to discuss the status of the case. While discussing the case he offered her coffee. After consuming the coffee, she grew drowsy and started losing consciousness. She then noticed that Rao was guiding her somewhere. Though she resisted and tried to free herself, he forcefully took her into the bedroom and lay her down on the bed, after which she became unconscious. When she regained consciousness, she realised that she had been raped. She also found that she was alone in the house.
“ I decided to approach the police and lodge a complaint against him, but he threatened to kill me and started harassing me. Since then, he has raped me on several occasions and spoiled my life. I have been tortured mentally and physically for years together,” the woman claimed. Whenever she tried to approach the police, Rao used his political influence to stop her and also threatened her. The threats continue till now, she said.
After attempts to approach he police failed, she approached the NHRC on 23 January, 2020, and lodged a complaint seeking action against Rao and protection for her life. Even after this, he threatened her and said he would make public her nude photographs that was in his possession.
The SHRC issued orders stating that the woman is at liberty to file a complaint with the police. “Upon receiving the complaint, the police shall register a case provided if the contents disclose a cognizable offence and investigate the case and take action as per law and the police shall submit action taken report to the commission as early as possible,” it said in the order.