New Delhi: Minister of State for Human Resources and Development (HRD) Shashi Tharoor has come out in support of the Kerala Police, who have booked 111 Internet users for posting and sharing 'defamatory' comments on Facebook against Rajya Sabha Deputy Chairman PJ Kurien in the Suryanelli gang-rape case.
Mahila Congress leader Bindu Krishna had filed a complaint with the police, following which the Kerala Police Cyber Cell registered the case against 111 people. Krishna had claimed that she was also the target of several of those comments.
Defending Kurien and the police, Tharoor said it was a case of defamation.
The RS Deputy Chairman is not an accused in the Suryanelli rape case but was named by a survivor in a police complaint. No FIR has been registered against him so far.
Krishna said she had submitted the complaint to Chief Minister Oommen Chandy, who forwarded it to the cyber cell for investigation.
Krishna said she was only stating the party stand on Kurien issue, but the comments that appeared in the social media were "highly defamatory" with a view to "tarnish" her image as a woman.
"As per the information available so far, the comments were posted from a fake ID and police were trying to trace their origin. Police are in contact with Facebook authorities," Krishna said.
The comments were noticed on February 4 and by then itself more 140 people were found to have shared them, she said.
Kurien was named by the Suryanelli victim as one of those who had sexually assaulted her in 1996. The Supreme Court had exonerated the Congress leader of the charges.
The victim recently wrote to her advocate seeking to explore the possibility of filing a review plea in the Supreme Court for a fresh probe against Kurien, triggering calls for his resignation.
Kurien has maintained that he had been cleared of the charges by the apex court.