press trust of india
Jammu, 7 February
Jammu and Kashmir Health Minister Shabir Khan, booked in a molestation case, today resigned from the Council of Ministers.
“I have received the resignation of the Minister of State for Health Shabir Khan and am forwarding the same to the Governor for acceptance,” Chief Minister Omar Abdullah said on the micro-blogging site Twitter.
Police registered a case against Mr Khan yesterday after a lady doctor alleged that the minister had called her to his office in Srinagar and attempted to molest her.
A case was registered under Section 354 of the Ranbir Penal Code (assault or criminal force on a woman with the intention to outrage her woman) and Section 509 RPC (word, gesture or act intended to outrage the modesty of a woman) against him.
According to the complaint lodged against him, Mr Khan, who belongs to Congress, allegedly tried to make advances towards the woman and molest her when she visited his office in the state secretariat here on 28 January.
The woman said in her complaint that she felt uncomfortable and quickly left the room after the minister allegedly tried to molest her.
PDP chief Mehbooba Mufti said: “Now that the govenment has taken the first step by asking the minister to step down, it should now arrest him.”
State BJP chief spokesperson Jitendra Singh said: “It is an unfortunate development. A thorough probe needs to be ordered and the law must take its course without prejudice or favour to anyone.”
Defending Mr Khan, Congress MP Lal Singh wondered why there was delay in filing the complaint and said there was a possibility that the case was politically motivated.