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Swami Chinmayanand arrested but no rape charge, woman charged with extortion

Chinmayanand was arrested on Friday morning and charged under Section 376C of the Indian Penal Code that does not amount to rape but can put him behind bars for up to 10 years.

, ET Bureau|
Updated: Sep 21, 2019, 09.17 AM IST
Swami Chinmayanand
NEW DELHI: The Shahjahanpur case took a twist on Friday, with the Uttar Pradesh Police saying that the BJP’s former MP Swami Chinmayanand did not rape a law student but induced her into sexual relations by abusing his position of authority, and accusing the victim of trying to extort Rs 5 crore from the former Union minister using a video of the sexual act.

Chinmayanand was arrested on Friday morning, four days after the woman recorded her statement before a magistrate, and charged under Section 376C of the Indian Penal Code that does not amount to rape but can put him behind bars for up to 10 years. The Special Investigation Team (SIT), however, added a twist naming the victim in another FIR for being involved in the plot to extort Rs 5 crore from Chinmayanand through calls and messages over WhatsApp.

The SIT produced a video of the woman performing massages on Chinmayanand, claiming it was major proof against him and saying the same video was used by the woman and three of friends to try to extort Rs 5 crore from the former BJP MP.

“Chinmayanand had confessed to having vulgar conversations with the victim and getting massages from her, as per the video. He said that he was too embarrassed on what he had done and did not want to say anything more. That is more than enough,” said SIT chief Naveen Arora.

Chinmayanand, who was later sent to jail by the court, has been charged with stalking and criminal intimidation as well. But the arrest of the woman in the extortion case has also not been ruled out by the SIT, after three of her friends were arrested on Friday. “We are awaiting some evidence – like mobile phones of the woman and her friend Sanjay Singh from which calls and messages were sent to Chinmayanand, are still missing,” said Arora.

Arora pointed to “4,200 calls” between the woman and Singh since January and their stay in hotels in Delhi, Shimla and Dausa last month before the police found them. The SIT has seized CCTV footage of the four hotels in question. He also said the woman and Chinmayanand had exchanged 200 phone calls this year but Chinmayanand had deleted some data from his phone which the police was trying to extract. The SIT has to submit a status report to Allahabad High Court in the case on Monday.

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