"We have registered a case under Section 509 of the Indian Penal Code," the police said.
Kerala police on Tuesday registered a case against IAS officer N Prasanth for allegedly insulting the modesty of a woman journalist by sending her inappropriate stickers over WhatsApp while she reached out to him for an official reaction.
Police told PTI that a case has been registered in the incident, which happened in February this year after obtaining legal advice on the issue.
“We have registered a case under Section 509 of the Indian Penal Code,” the police said.
The section deals with the offence of insulting the modesty of any woman, utters any word, makes any sound or gesture, or exhibits any object, intending that such a word or sound shall be heard, or that such gesture or object shall be seen, by such woman, or intrudes upon the privacy of such woman.
Prasanth, the Managing Director of Kerala State Inland Navigation Corporation (KSINC), was caught in a political controversy early this year after the corporation signed an MoU with a US firm on deep sea trawling.
The reporter from a vernacular daily texted Prasanth introducing herself and sought a reply on the controversy. In the screenshots of the WhatsApp messages that were circulated, the journalist could be seen asking whether it was a good time to talk regarding a news story.
To this Prasanth replied with just a sticker. When she replied saying the story was not to harm him, and asked him to give a statement regarding the controversy, he replied with an inappropriate and obscene sticker.
A complaint was filed with the police by the Kerala Union of Working Journalists (KUWJ).
The state government later in May had ordered a probe against the 2007 batch IAS officer for his alleged misbehaviour.
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