Definition of rape ‘not met properly’ in case against Chinmayanand: SIT Chief
The videos provided by the girl, of her giving body massages to Chinmayanand, are termed "unaltered, unedited and unmorphed" by a forensic science lab.
Section 376C of the Indian Penal Code (IPC), that implied misusing one's authority to have sexual relations but not amounting to rape, is the "only section" which could be applied against Chinmayanand as per the available evidence, Naveen Arora told ET. "There is no other option. We have read lots of Supreme Court directions and taken legal advice. The SC has clear-cut guidelines in cases where there is a doubt.”
The videos provided by the girl, of her giving body massages to Chinmayanand, are termed "unaltered, unedited and unmorphed" by a forensic science lab, the officer said. She is "very much a victim in one case, but an accused in another”, he said, adding: “We are fair and unbiased and do not want to save any of them if they are the culprits.”
Arora said the extortion case was "very strong", as videos of discussions between the girl and her friends in a car clearly showed one of them, Sanjay Singh, saying he had sent a message seeking Rs 5 crore from the former MP after the girl provoked him to do so. "The girl also accepts it in the said video. The mens rea (criminal intention) and the intention is there. We are getting the voice samples of the girl and Singh now to match them with the video," Arora said.
According to people in the know of the case, Singh started demanding money from Chinmayanand even earlier, but the former MP then said he could only pay up to Rs 1 crore.
"Chinmayanand has said so in his statement, but we need to cross-verify this as he is an accused. Sanjay Singh did not say this to us in his statement but, apparently, he said so on a TV channel. We have issued a notice to the channel seeking the unedited footage," Arora confirmed.
Chinmayanand’s lawyer, Om Singh, claimed that the girl had been blackmailing the BJP leader for a year and had deliberately tried to come close to him.
"They (the girl and her friends) worked as a gang as per a conspiracy. The SIT should invoke the Gangsters Act and National Security Act against them," he said.
Arora told ET: “We book the accused as per their actions and ensure that excessive sections should not be put."
Arora also dismissed claims that the SIT was focussing more on the extortion case. "We are going simultaneously on both cases; it is not that we are concentrating on one. We have already done lots of work in the first case (girl’s complaint) and the investigation in that is already complete."
He said Chinmayanand's mobile phone had been sent to the Central Forensic Science Laboratory in Gandhinagar to retrieve information as he had the “habit of” deleting all WhatsApp data daily.