Uddhav sena leader Kedar Dighe gets pre-arrest bail in rape case

uddhav sena leader kedar dighe gets pre-arrest bail in rape case

Uddhav sena leader Kedar Dighe gets pre-arrest bail in rape case

The Mumbai sessions court has granted pre-arrest bail to Shiv Sena leader Kedar Dighe in a rape case, stating that the charge against him was that of criminal intimidation.

The court said: “The main allegations of rape are against the co­accused. Nothing is to be recovered or discovered at the instance of Kedar Dighe. Considering the accusations made against Dighe prima facie, at the most, an offence under Section 506(II) (criminal intimidation) of IPC is applicable against him.”

ALSO READ | Mumbai court grants anticipatory bail to Shiv Sena’s Kedar Dighe in rape case

The co-accused in the case is Delhi-based businessman Rohit Kapoor. The NM Joshi Marg police station in Mumbai had booked Kapoor and Dighe after a 23-year-old woman registered a complaint against them. Kapoor was accused of sexually assaulting the woman in a room at a hotel in central Mumbai, while Dighe, who is his friend, allegedly threatened her with dire consequences if she approached the police. The case was registered against them under sections 376 (rape) and 506(2) (criminal intimidation) of the Indian Penal Code.

After the complaint was registered, Dighe approached the Mumbai sessions court seeking protection from arrest. Dighe is the nephew of late Shiv Sena leader Anand Dighe, to whom Maharashtra Chief Minister Eknath Shinde also showed allegiance. However, after the Shinde faction rebelled against party chief Uddhav Thackeray and Shinde replaced Thackeray as the Chief Minister of Maharashtra, Dighe was appointed as the head of the party in Thane by Thackeray.

According to Dighe, he was informed of a dispute between the co­accused and the woman by the office-bearers of the hotel. He said when he visited the hotel, he was made aware that Kapoor had misbehaved with the woman. Dighe said that the victim demanded money from Kapoor to “settle the matter” amicably. But when her offer was rejected, she filed a false complaint.

ALSO READ | Shiv Sena Thane chief booked for threatening rape victim

Dighe also told the court that he was ready to co­operate in the investigation and, since he has a permanent residence and had “roots in society”, the possibility of him fleeing from justice does not arise.

Public prosecutor Meera Chaudhry Bhosale opposed any relief to him, though. “There is sufficient evidence against Dighe and therefore, his custodial interrogation is required for investigation,” Chaudhry said. The investigating officer, too, told the court that Dighe’s custody was necessary.

The court, however, noted that the CCTV footage of the hotel was with the police and custodial interrogation is not needed. “In my opinion, custodial interrogation of Dighe is unwarranted. He is ready to furnish the surety and to co­operate further investigation. As such, this is a fit case in which Dighe can be released on pre-arrest bail,” said the judge.

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