Malayalam superstar Dileep walked out of the Aluva Jail on Tuesday after the Kerala High Court granted him bail in the abduction and molestation case involving an actress. Hundreds of anxious fans received the superstar outside the Central Jail, where he was lodged since his arrest on July 10. The actor was granted bail on stringent conditions with Justice Suni Thomas warning him not to tamper with evidence.
The court has asked Dileep to surrender his passport, deposit a bail bond of Rs one lakh and two personal sureties. The court had previously rejected his bail pleas, this was the fifth such approach by the actor.
What is the controversial abduction case?
Dileep, who has been in the Malayalam film industry for over two decades now has been accused of allegedly conspiring to abduct and sexually assault a leading actress in February this year. After hours of marathon interrogation by the police in July, Dileep was charged with several counts, including conspiracy and gang-rape. He was accused of hiring the gang led by Pulsar Suni to kidnap and torment the woman actor to settle his personal scores.
The victim was once close to Dileep’s family, at a time when he was married to popular actress Manju Warrier. But this relationship is believed to have soured after Dileep and Warrier formalised a mutual separation in 2015. Dileep is now married to another popular actress Kavya Madhavan. Dileep’s arrest was based on details provided by the key accused in the case, Sunil Kumar alias Pulsar Suni.
On February 17, Kumar allegedly intercepted the car in which the actress was traveling in Kochi, assaulted her inside the vehicle for around two hours and recorded visuals of the act on a mobile phone.
Following the alleged assault, police arrested and chargesheeted a seven-member gang, led by Kumar, on charges of abduction, rape and attempted blackmail. But they continued the probe, with the actress claiming that Kumar had revealed that the abduction was a “supari” and asked her to “cooperate”.
After Dileep’s arrest, his family had accused the police and some Malayalam film industry bigwigs of hatching a conspiracy against Dileep. In a statement, Dileep’s family had said, “Despite completely destroying the life and promising career of Dileep and that of his teenage daughter in the process, a group of unscrupulous senior police officers, a small-but-powerful section of the film industry and scores of obliging media personnel are trying to destroy Dileep’s entire family by implicating Kavya in the case and arresting her.”
The Victim’s Side
The Malayalam actress who was allegedly abducted on the alleged directions of Dileep in a release issued to media claimed that she had personal issues with the arrested actor in the past. She said that the news about the actor’s arrest had shocked her.
“I haven’t tried to make anyone accused in the case out of personal animosity. I have not dropped any hint about any name. I had acted with this actor in several films. It is true that there had been some personal issues between us and later that friendship collapsed,” she added.
Dileep was denied bail four times, twice by the Angamaly Magistrate Court and twice by the Kerala High Court. He was granted bail in his fifth attempt even as the prosecution objected to it. The court, however, observed that there was a ‘substantial’ change in the ‘circumstances’ that allowed it to grant relief for the accused actor.