New Delhi: Saravjeet Singh, a 28-year-old Delhi resident, who was labelled an “eve teaser” and a “pervert” by media channels after Jasleen Kaur, a former Delhi University student, had in 2015 accused him of verbally harassing her at a traffic signal in West Delhi, has been acquitted of all charges, ThePrint has learnt.
The judgment by Justice M.M. Sonam Gupta, a copy of which has been accessed by ThePrint, says the “testimony of the complainant is not trustworthy and casts doubt on the case of the prosecution”.
It also states that the prosecution has failed to prove its case beyond any reasonable doubt. “Benefit of doubt extended to accused. Saravjeet Singh is acquitted of all charges,” the judgment adds.
ThePrint had, in September 2018, reported how even after three years, the arguments in the case couldn’t begin because complainant Kaur did not attend even a single hearing in the matter. She made her appearance only in December 2018 and defended her absence in the past 14 hearings.
Twenty-three-year-old Kaur had moved to Canada soon after her viral post to pursue a career in Human Resources. Singh, in the meanwhile, said he struggled to keep his job and had to appear before the police each time he wanted to leave the city.
Also read: I am ashamed: Ex-Times Now employee apologises 3 yrs after ‘molestation’ case
‘The criminal tag has been removed’
Talking to ThePrint, Singh said that he could not believe his ears when the judge announced his acquittal.
“I am feeling free today. Justice has been done and the tag of a criminal that I had been walking around with has been lifted,” he said.
“The judge had asked my lawyers if there were any witnesses to be produced. When my lawyers said that the witnesses could be called in the next hearing, the judge replied saying there was no need as the court had decided to free me,” he added.
“My lawyer and I looked at each other in disbelief and then I just broke into tears.”
An apology that never came
Soon after ThePrint’s report on how arguments in the case couldn’t begin because the complainant failed to appear in the proceedings, a former Times Now employee, who claimed to have covered the alleged molestation had apologised to Singh, saying he was “ashamed”.
Singh had earlier said that he had no complaint with the journalist but wants an apology from the channel. “They called me a national pervert, Delhi ka darinda (Delhi’s demon) and what not. That was not the employee’s fault but an editorial call.”
Arnab Goswami was the editor-in-chief of Times Now at that time. “Mr Arnab should apologise. He called me a pervert in front of the world but now the court has acquitted me. He crushed my image, so he should now restore it,” Singh added.
The apology, however, never came. Singh also took to Facebook to write a post on the same: “Agar duniya aap news channels ko dekhti hai to wo us news par belive kar lete hai…it is a req ki pehle sach pata kare..fir duniya ko dikhaye.. sirf TRP he sab kuch nahi hoti. (The audience believes what news channels show. So, the channels should verify facts before putting out a story; TRP is not everything),” he wrote
“I just want to live in peace”
Responding to ThePrint on her absence from the court earlier, Kaur had said that she did not want to “stretch this”.
“I want to live in peace,” Kaur had said from Canada where she is working for an HR company. She finally appeared in court following a social media uproar calling her “insensitive”.
Kaur had earlier also said that she wouldn’t give up and was willing to fight until the end. “He had an advantage over me, since he was here and I was in Canada caught up in my studies.”
Kaur, in a Facebook post in 2015, had accused Singh of verbally harassing her at a Tilak Nagar traffic signal in West Delhi. The post immediately went viral, with Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and actress Sonakshi Sinha, among others, lauding her ‘bravery’.
The Delhi Police subsequently arrested Singh, while TV channels and social media labelled him a “pervert”. Before his arrest, however, Singh had put out his own Facebook post stating that he was innocent.
Also read: Delhi woman who accused biker of molestation 3 years ago finally appears in court
So many morons incapable of critical thinking are quick to judge this woman as a liar. These morons are as bad as the media.
Imagine what you would have done in her place. Say you get assaulted today and make a social media post detailing the incident for closure or just to take the weight of your mind. Then you get a lucrative opportunity in a distant country. However due to your post going viral, the cops decide to take action anyway. Now would you abandon your work or studies and come back to India on the whims of the Indian Justice System to attend every court hearing?
There is nothing in this case that confirms the guy as innocent or guilty, or the girl as a liar. It is ultimately a case of he-says-she-says. For all we know he might indeed be a pervert and is lucky to escape legal punishment due to circumstances. Did the girl actually make a police report, or did the police take action purely due to media coverage (as they often do)? Were there efforts to settle or plea-bargain? Was the girl advised to drop the case due to her unavailability? We do not know any of these very important details before we can make lay blame either way. This article itself is quite irresponsible to omit those details.
The two entities that deserve blame without any doubt are the Indian Justice System which was too slow, pedantic, whimsical and ineffectual, and of course Indian Media which was to quick to personally attack someone without sufficient proof.
Oh the girl was guilty. The boy suffered without any fault of his and because of that silly girl’s ego. He was quite clear and non aggresive from the outset of this case. All his interviews he has been most polite and couteous. The girl on the other hand had that bug of getting cheap publicity and got away with nothing. An eyewitness on spot approved the guy’s side of argument. You too seem to be a sick man hating feminist. Such shame
idiots like you declare girl innocent! if girl was innocent why was she not able to produce any witness unlike boy who produced witness and attended every hearing in the court!get your brain checked!
There was an eye witness, another vehicle driver who witnessed it. He said it was just two young people shouting at each other, which is very common in a traffic jam. Usually, people argue and then go their way. But she claiming that to be “molestation” is simply absurd. Just because she argued with a man, it doesn’t mean he molested her. She ruined his life for 4 years. I agree with you on our slow Legal System and TRP-driven Judgemental Media.
She should be punished … with 100 lashes
Arnab Goswami is a scoundrel who is without morals, conscience and basic human values. His reporting is as vile as his mental state is. Who the f…. can pronounce an accused guilty TILL the courts give a verdict? Who will give back the 3 odd years of humiliation to this gentleman??? Who?? The woman who accused or Arnab who convicted him through his gutter driven channel?? Or the countless people who treated him as a pervert and a criminal? What kind of nonsense is this? Delhi ka darinda???? Heavens! The gentleman should sue the woman and Arnab Goswami! This country should exercise the right to sue for defamation! The sooner the better for asses like Arnab who THEN might keep their filthy mouth shut.
This woman had accused the person of verbally harassing her, but what happened in actuality was totally different. The woman blocked the road
for some protest and then when he went on his way without paying any attention to her. She accused him of verbal/sexual harassment.
She escaped and didn’t even attend the hearings because she basically had nothing to back up her false claims. Even the TV reporter apologised because he knew the truth.
This is how our legal system is being misused for attention.
Somebody please inform the company of the Jasleen Kaur for her alleged case of harassment and as she is in the HR department, what if somebody faces same kind of harassment charges in Canada. This history of hers needs to be known to her company.
Further this guy must file defamation case against all including Jasleen Kaur, her father, Times Now, Varnan Goswami and seek monetary damages. Don’t leave them to pray on another innocent person. And I’m sorry for the loss of these years of your life.
The article itself says the case was not proveddue to prosecution failure to produce witnesses.
Doesn’t mean the guy is not guilty.
Courts often are unable to give correct judgements because of poor investigation by the police.
Don’t absolve the guy please!!
oh really?? then why didnt the prosecution produce any witness?? or why didnt the girl come to the court??? can you please answer??
Arnab Goswami is a frankenstein or bhasmasur that will one day prove harmful to his own creators. Mark my words.
There are two main culprits here: the media and the legal system. Media sensationalizes and it helps build outrage by presenting only one side of the picture. The legal system takes too long to decide any case. In this case, if parties don’t show up the case should have been terminated right then. Both the media and the judiciary thrive by casting blame on others while failing miserably in their job.
Arnab is Media ka darinda.. don’t take his words, sorry yelling seriously!
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