The ongoing trial in the case involving the abduction and sexual assault of a leading Malayalam actress witnessed a turning point Thursday when key prosecution witness and actor Edavela Babu turned hostile. He changed his statement that he had given earlier to the police and deposed in favour of actor Dileep, one of the prime accused in the case.
Babu, who’s also the general secretary of the Association of Malayalam Movie Artists (A.M.M.A), had given a statement to the police confirming that the survivor of the assault had complained to AMMA about Dileep foiling her opportunities in the film industry. He had said that he suspected truth in her complaint and had even talked about the same with Dileep. He had reportedly asked the actor why he was interfering in such matters.
Last week, Dileep’s ex-wife Manju Warrier along with Geetu Mohandas, Rimi Tomy and Ramya Nambeeshan had testified in court in conjunction with the case.
Dileep, the eighth accused in the case, is accused of several charges including kidnapping, rape, criminal intimidation and conspiracy. The SIT chargesheet runs into 1450 pages and has testimonies from 355 persons, including 33 persons who gave confidential statements.
On February 17, 2017, the actress, while en route from Thrissur to Kochi, was kidnapped and allegedly sexually assaulted in a moving car by a gang of men including first accused Pulsar Suni. Dileep, who has acted in more than 150 films in Malayalam, is accused of masterminding the crime as he held a grudge against the actress for her alleged involvement in his fallout with his ex-wife Manju Warrier.
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