CID findings belie former minister's claim

CID findings belie former minister's claim

Witnesses confirm that Halappa visited Venkateshamurthys house on Nov 26

CID findings belie former minister's claim

Police sources said three witnesses had confirmed that Halappa had visited Venkateshamurthy’s house on the day and time that Chandravati had mentioned in her complaint of sexual assault on her by Halappa. 

Halappa is learnt to have told the interrogating officers that Venkateshamurthy was just an acquaintance and not a friend as claimed by the couple. Also, he had seen Chandravati “only once at a function”.

He also told the police that the compact disc (CD) produced as evidence by the couple, was  morphed and produced in Bangalore. He alleged that he had been framed by his political rivals.

The CD was yet to be sent to the government laboratory in Thiruvananthapuram for verification, the sources said.

The clothes said to be worn by the ‘victim’ and the accused during the alleged rape were sent to the Forensic Science Laboratory in Hyderabad on Tuesday. The test reports were expected to be ready in 10 days.

The proposed DNA test is likely to be delayed as Halappa’s lawyer has not given permission to the police to draw a blood sample. Police, as per the rules, cannot draw any fluid without the consent of the person concerned. The police may have to draw blood for the test in the sessions court, it is said. The advocate has also refused to give the voice sample of his client. The sample is required to test whether Halappa’s voice matches that in the CD submitted by the ‘victim’ to the police.

Sources said Halappa’s associates Girish and Basavaraj were not traceable. Both were accused in the case as Chandravati had alleged that they made threatening calls to her on behalf of Halappa. Police teams are searching for the duo.

Police said Halappa was in judicial custody and it was up to the Department of Prisons to take the case forward. The police had to file the final investigation report (in common parlance charge-sheet) with the JMFC, which might take a month’s time.

What’s the clinching evidence that the police secured before arresting Halappa? Sources said there was no reason to disbelieve the ‘victim’ and circumstantial evidence indicated that Halappa was present in her house on November 26.

“If a woman says she is raped, police have to believe it and register a case as per the law. It is up to the accused to disprove it. In this case, it is up to Halappa to disprove the charges against him in court,” the sources said.

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