An 18-year-old employee of a plush suburban lounge and bar arrested after he was found videotaping women in the toilet of the establishment through a mobile phone taped to the wall has told police he arrived in Mumbai from a village in Uttar Pradesh three months ago and, following the culture shock he had on seeing the way women dressed up in the city. He also confessed that he shared the videos with his colleagues on a regular basis.
The accused, Garibnath Ram, was remanded to police custody till February 11 after being arrested on Sunday from the Sky Rooftop lounge and bar in Andheri (West).
Ram was arrested by the Amboli police under Section 66 (A) of the IT Act and Section 345 (c) of the IPC for outraging modesty of a woman by word or gesture after a 21-year-old patron at the bar found a mobile taped to the wall of the toilet. The woman, a fashion designer, had gone to the Sky Rooftop Lounge along with three friends including two men. At 8.30pm when she went to the toilet, she noticed an unusual light against the wall. Another woman who went inside after her then saw the mobile phone and called the complainant. The two then removed the taped mobile phone.
The complainant said Ram who was standing guard in the passageway barged inside as soon as he found out that he could get caught. He snatched the mobile phone and was about to flee when the woman’s husband caught him and began to hit him. The complainant then called up the police emergency number.
“When the accused began bleeding, the manager of the lounge approached us and in the chaos took the accused to the hospital. We called the police and informed them about the incident. I switched on the mobile phone and saw four to five videos of women including myself,” the complainant said in her statement.
The police registered a complaint against Ram and arrested him as soon as he was discharged from the hospital.
“We have recovered the video of the complainant from Ram’s mobile and have sent the phone for forensic analysis to find out whether he had deleted videos. We are also trying to find out since when has he been taping his mobile to the toilet wall,” said an officer from the Amboli police station. The police have recorded the statement of the management of the Sky Lounge who have said that they were not aware of this.
The police are now in the process of questioning the other staff and colleagues of Ram to find out whether he had been sharing these videos. “Ram has told us that he used to show the videos to his colleagues at night where they used to sleep,” the officer added.