Kerala HC quashes sexual harassment case against actor Unni Mukundan

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Unni Mukundan. Photo: Anand SL/Mathrubhumi Archives

Kochi: The Kerala High Court on Wednesday quashed the criminal proceedings against Malayalam actor Unni Mukundan in a sexual harassment case.

The court passed the order after noting that a settlement had been reached between the actor and the complainant-woman.

"No public interest will be served by continuing with the proceedings against the petitioner (Mukundan). Chances of a successful prosecution are also minimal in light of the settlement arrived at between the parties," the court order said.

Mukundan was facing trial for allegedly committing the offences under Sections 354 (outraging the modesty of a woman) and 354B of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) before a Judicial Magistrate First Class.

The allegation against the actor was that he forcefully tried to kiss and rape the complainant, an Austrian woman of Indian origin, when she had gone to meet him to brief him about a story for a prospective movie.

First, the trial court dismissed his arguments and framed the charges against him, following which the actor approached the sessions court, which also did not give him any relief. It was then he came before the high court, which initially granted a stay but it was lifted and refused to quash the criminal proceedings.

But in a fresh plea filed in May, an affidavit was filed by the complainant-woman, stating that the dispute between both of them was personal in nature and had been settled.

And on Wednesday, the counsel for the woman confirmed that she did not wish to continue the proceedings against Mukundan and hence the high court quashed the proceedings against the actor. IANS

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