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Kerala Congress legislator arrested for allegedly raping 51-year-old woman

Kerala Congress MLA M Vincent has been arrested from Thiruvananthapuram. Photograph: (WION)

WION Web Team Kerala, India Jul 22, 2017, 11.46 AM (IST)

Kerala Congress legislator M Vincent has been arrested from Thiruvananthapuram for allegedly raping, stalking, and abetment of suicide of a 51-year-old woman. He has been sent to judicial custody for 14 days.

Police questioned the Congress MLA from Kovalam for over three hours at the MLA's hostel in Thiruvananthapuram after which he was arrested.

"The MLA has been arrested in the case," Kollam Police Commissioner Ajeetha Begum, who is heading the investigation team, told PTI.

On Friday, a fresh case of rape and stalking was registered against Vincent based on the statement of the woman who had tried to end her life at Thiruvananthapuram district's Balaramapuram after being harassed by Vincent last week, police sources said.

Her statement was also recorded by the city magistrate at a hospital in Neyyatinkara, where she is undergoing treatment. 

The woman had tried to end her life at Thiruvananthapuram district's Balaramapuram last week, police sources said. Her husband also alleged that Vincent used to call her repeatedly over the phone and harass her.

Vincent, however, denied the allegations, claiming that there was a "political conspiracy" behind the charges against him. He filed a complaint with police and demanded a detailed probe into the matter.

He claimed that a CPI(M) local leader was present at the woman’s house when she attempted suicide by consuming sleeping pills.

The woman's husband reportedly complained that the Kovalam MLA used to harass her over phone.

He also moved an anticipatory bail before a court here today.

He claimed that he had fallen prey to the CPM 's conspiracy, and had been arrested because of pressure from the chief minister's office. 

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In a series of tweets soon after the arrest, Kerala chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan said the government would deal with strictness against women and would do everything to bring offenders to justice. 

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After his arrest, the CPM said the Congress should take disciplinary action against him and ensure that he resigns from his post.

CPM leader Brinda Karat said told ANI, "It's a very serious case, especially after the MLA getting arrested. It is a shame to the party. The Congress must take an action as it is necessary for them to know what is right or wrong. They should also ensure that Vincent resigns. This is the least that they can do".

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