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Haryana ex-top cop goes underground

Yamunanagar (Haryana), June 17 (Calcutta Tube) M.S. Ahlawat, a former inspector general of Haryana Police booked last week for molesting a woman lawyer in May 2002, has gone underground, police said Thursday.

Ahlawat’s anticipatory bail plea was turned down by District and Sessions Judge R.C. Godara here Wednesday.

Yamunanagar police did not find Ahlawat at his Panchkula residence, around 10 km from the state capital Chandigarh, where they had gone to question him.

District police chief Sibash Kabiraj said here Thursday: ‘A Yamunanagar police team had gone to the Panchkula residence of Ahlawat today to question him regarding this case. He was not present there and nobody at home even knew about his whereabouts.’

‘We have also pasted a notice outside his house directing him to immediately contact us and to cooperate in the investigation,’ he said.

‘He cannot escape anywhere as we have alerted all the districts and also issued a look out notice informing all international airports so that he cannot flee abroad,’ said Kabiraj.

Police had constituted a Special Investigation Team (SIT) to probe the molestation case registered against Ahlawat, eight years after a woman lawyer first made her complaint.

He was booked following a 2002 complaint of molestation and intimidation by Harvinder Kaur, who lives in this town.

She had alleged in her police complaint that she had been sexually harassed by Ahlawat in 2002. He was then superintendent of police of Yamunanagar district, about 100 km from the state capital Chandigarh.

Harvinder Kaur said in her complaint that Ahlawat had tried to harass her when she had gone to meet him in connection with one of her court cases in May 2002.

She alleged that Ahlawat insisted she come to his residence and sought sexual favours from her. In protest, she also sat outside the office of the state police chief and demanded strict action against the tainted official.

At that time, an inquiry was conducted by a senior official of the Haryana police but he recommended another departmental inquiry against Ahlawat.

Recently, a court had upheld the conviction of former state police chief S.P.S. Rathore for the 1990 molestation of teenager Ruchika Girhotra who later committed suicide.

Rathore, who had initially been sentenced to six months, was awarded 18 months rigorous imprisonment and is currently lodged in Chandigarh’s Burail jail.

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