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High court rejects minister's plea to seek bail in Jammu

Jammu, Feb 7 : The Jammu and Kashmir High Court Friday turned down a plea by Shabir Ahmad Khan -- accused by a woman doctor of trying to sexually assault her -- to move for bail in Jammu instead of Srinagar.


Khan, who resigned Friday from the post of minister of state for health, has been accused by a woman doctor from Srinagar of attempted sexual assault last month.

A high court bench headed by Chief Justice M.M. Kumar rejected Khan's plea holding that no compelling circumstances can be made out to allow the application.

After the rejection of the application, the accused will now have to move for bail before a competent court in Srinagar.

Khan earlier submitted his resignation to Chief Minister Omar Abdullah, who forwarded it to state governor N.N. Vohra for acceptance.

"I have received the resignation of Minister of State for Health Shabir Khan and am forwarding (it) to the Governor for acceptance," Abdullah said on twitter.

Official sources said Abdullah earlier told the Congress leadership to advise the minister to resign after a police complaint was filed against him.

Congress sources told IANS that the party told Khan to step aside until he was proved innocent.

A Srinagar doctor has alleged that Khan attempted to sexually assault her when she met him at his office Jan 28.

A First Information Report was registered against the minister at the Shaheed Ganj police station Thursday following a direction from the chief judicial magistrate, Srinagar.

If proved guilty, Khan faces imprisonment up to two years.

Reacting to the development, union minister and former chief minister Farooq Abdullah said nobody is above the law and the law should take its own course if the complaint against Khan was true.

Meanwhile, the doctors' association in Srinagar has decided to hold protests Saturday against the alleged sexual assault of a fellow doctor.

--IANS (Posted on 07-02-2014)

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