Former Union minister Chinmayanand's lawyer claimed rape charges were a 'conspiracy' to blackmail him. (File Photo)
BJP leader and former minister Swami Chinmayanand was reportedly grilled for over seven hours by the Uttar Pradesh Police over the rape allegations levelled against him by a law student. According to an NDTV report, the intense questioning began at around 6:30 pm on Thursday and ended around 1 am on Friday. It should be noted that the UP Police has so far not registered rape case against the 73-year-old. Cooperating with probe, Chinmayanand may have to appear again, his lawyer was quoted as saying by NDTV. Meanwhile, Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi Vadra slammed the UP Police on Friday for the inaction in the sensitive case. In an attack, Vadra on Twitter said that why has UP Police not filed a case against Chinmayanand so far? Is it because of his connection with the BJP?
The special investigation team, formed on the orders of the Supreme Court, summoned Chinmayanad to the police lines on Thursday night, his counsel Om Singh said. Later, he was brought back to his residence Divya Dham in Mumukshu Ashram under heavy security, he said. The SIT team also inspected the bedroom of the BJP leader at the ashram but since it was very late they sealed the room. They are expected to continue their inspection on Friday, he said.
Previously, the Uttar Pradesh law student had filed a fresh complaint with Delhi Police on Monday alleging rape and physical exploitation by the BJP leader for nearly a year. Addressing the media in Shahjahanpur, she also accused the Shahjahanpur police off not registering the rape case against Chinmayanand.
According to sources, the Delhi police has forwarded the complaint to the Uttar Pradesh SIT, which is already probing the case, and no FIR has been registered in connection to the fresh complaints so far.
"Swami Chinmayanand raped me and even exploited me physically for one year," the student, who was missing for last several days alleged before media, her face covered with a black scarf.
"The Delhi Police has registered this complaint at Lodhi Road police station and has forwarded it to Shahjahanpur police, which is not registering the rape case," she said.
"On Sunday, the SIT quizzed me for about 11 hours. I have told them about the rape. Even after telling them everything, they have not arrested Chinmayanand yet," she added.
Last week, the Yogi Adityanath-led Uttar Pradesh government formed a Special Investigation Team (SIT) after the Supreme Court directed to do so to investigate the charges levelled by the woman, who is a postgraduate student at a college run by Chinmayanand's trust.
The woman went missing since August 24, a day after she posted a video on social media alleging that a "senior leader of the sant community" was harassing and threatening to kill her.
Her father had filed a complaint with the police, accusing 72-year-old Chinmayanand of sexually harassing her, a charge refuted by the former Union minister's lawyer who claimed it was a "conspiracy" to blackmail him.
Police had on August 27 booked Chinmayanand under sections 364 (kidnapping or abducting in order to murder) and 506 (criminal intimidation) of the Indian Penal Code based on the father's complaint. The top court had taken suo motu cognizance and said the woman, who was found in Rajasthan last Friday, would continue to stay in Delhi till September 12.