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Uttar Pradesh police drops charges against Karnataka man under anti-conversion law

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Gorakhpur, Jan 21: The Uttar Pradesh police has dropped charges under the anti-conversion law against a man from Karnataka and booked him for allegedly raping a 19-year-old woman from here and committing fraud, officials said on Thursday.

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The man, Mehboob, is currently in judicial custody, they said. He along with the woman was brought to Gorakhpur from the southern state by a three-member UP police team, police said.

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SHO Chiluatal police station, Inspector Neeraj Rai said the charges against the man under the anti-conversion law were dropped as the accused did not hide his religious identity. Neither did he marry the woman, so the case does not come under the anti-conversion law, he said.

The officer said Mehboob, however, told the woman that he was a Navy officer and called her to Karnataka on the pretext of giving her a job. He then sexually harassed her. Charges of rape and fraud have thus been pressed against the man, the SHO said.

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According to police, the victim's father, who is a retired Armyman, had filed a missing report on January 5 claiming that his daughter had not returned from college on January 4. During investigation, it was found that she was in touch with Mehboob.

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    An FIR was registered against Mehboob under the anti-conversion law on January 11 based on a complaint by the woman's father. Later, the three-member team of the state police was formed to trace the woman on the instructions of SSP Jogender Kumar, police added.

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