Chinmayanand arrested in UP sexual harassment case

Chinmayanand arrested in UP sexual harassment case

The arrest came three days before the SIT was scheduled to submit its investigation report to the Allahabad High Court. Photo/PTI

Almost a month after being accused of ‘’sexually exploiting’’ a law student, former union minister and senior BJP leader Swami Chinmayanand was on Friday arrested by the special investigation team (SIT), which is probing the matter, in Shahajahanpur, about 175 kilometres from here.

Three others, including a ''friend'' of the victim, were also arrested on charges of trying to extort money from the seer by threatening to make his 'sex videos' public.

According to the police sources, Chinmayanand was arrested from his ‘ashram’ in the town by the SIT and was produced before a local court, which sent him to jail in judicial custody for 14 days. The arrest came three days before the SIT was scheduled to submit its investigation report to the Allahabad high court.

A senior police official here said that Chinmayanand had ''admitted'' to ''obscene conversation'' with the victim and also having her massage him on several occasions. ''The Swami, however, denied the rape charge,'' the official added.

An alleged friend of the victim and his two acquaintances were also arrested by the SIT on charges of extortion. ''They told the Swami that they had videos of his sexual acts and would make them public if he did not pay Rs. five crores'', the official said.

He said that the victim was also under the scanner over the extortion allegation. ''Preliminary investigation suggests that she may be involved in the extortion demand,'' he said.

The law student, who had last month posted a video on the social media alleging her ‘’sexual exploitation’’ by the seer, had recorded her statement before the magistrate in Shahajahanpur. She had gone missing after posting the video and was later traced to Rajasthan.

She had lodged a rape complaint against the seer in Delhi as the UP police had refused to register the same.

She had given over 40 videos to the police to substantiate her charges against Chinmayanand, who was also the director of the law college, where she studied.

Chinmayanand, who had denied the allegations and termed them as a ‘’conspiracy’’ to ‘’tarnish’’ his image. 

The Swami, however, has rejected the allegations and claimed that he had received an anonymous phone call demanding Rs. five crore extortion. He had also alleged in the complaint that the caller had threatened to release an ''obscene video''.

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