Updated: April 13, 2021 10:05:42 am
Evading arrest for almost 47 days, 28-year-old Mumbai-based journalist Varun Hiremath, who is an accused in a rape case, joined the investigation Sunday morning and was questioned for around seven hours.
Hiremath’s phone was seized and initial investigation revealed he was hiding in an apartment in Goa since February 23 when the FIR was registered against him under IPC sections 376 (punishment for offence of rape), 342 (punishment for wrongful confinement) and 509 (word, gesture or act intended to insult modesty of a woman) at Chanakyapuri police station.
DCP (New Delhi district) Dr Eish Singhal said, “He has joined investigation as per high court orders.”
Police said Hiremath appeared before the investigation team at Chanakyapuri police station at around 11 am and was let off at 5 pm. “He was asked about his whereabouts and the exact sequence of events when the incident took place. He told the police that he got scared after he came to know that an FIR of rape was registered against him,” an officer said. His cell-phone has been seized and sent to FSL for forensic examination.
On April 9, the Delhi High Court gave Hiremath interim protection from arrest subject to his joining the investigation. He wasn’t present in court at the time of the application. The woman’s lawyer said the court granted the anticipatory bail despite the fact that her counsel too was absent. A single-judge bench of the court gave the interim protection from arrest subject to Hiremath’s joining investigation. The lower court had earlier declined his application for anticipatory bail.
The woman, who has accused Hiremath of rape, last week wrote to Delhi Police Commissioner S N Shrivastava, sending a copy to Home Minister Amit Shah, questioning the police failure to arrest him, and asked why the police and the public prosecutor had failed to demand his presence at the time of filing of an anticipatory bail application in court.
The woman also demanded to know why the IO in her case, SHO (Chanakyapuri) and ACP (Chanakyapuri sub-division), had failed to take any action against Hiremath and claimed he had “escaped being arrested by the Delhi Police on two separate occasions”. She has also alleged that a woman police officer had “mocked her” for writing letters to the Commissioner. She said the officer used the words — “ naivety and nuisance” — against her in March when she and her lawyer asked the officer about Hiremath’s arrest.
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