Actor Vikram Chatterjee Charged With Culpable Homicide For Model Sonika Chauhan's Death
Popular Bengal TV actor Vikram Chatterjee has been charged with culpable homicide not amounting for murder for the death of model-anchor Sonika Singh Chauhan in a car accident. The charge carries a maximum jail term of 10 years.
He was earlier charged for causing death by rash and negligent driving, which carries a maximum jail term of two years.
After partying in at least two nightclubs, Mr Chatterjee was dropping Ms Chauhan home in the early hours of April 29 when the car crashed. He rushed her to hospital but she died 40 minutes later.
Mr Chatterjee was also injured in the crash; on May 4, the day he was released from hospital, he was served notice to record his statement with the police.
The actor has claimed that though he had alcohol on the night of the crash, he was not drunk. He also says he was not speeding and tramlines on the road may have caused him to crash.
Pictures that the model's friends shared on Snapchat have set off a storm. The footage shows Mr Chatterjee with a glass in his hand, but it is not clear whether it was alcohol or a soft drink.
Supporters of both have launched campaigns in Kolkata. A "Justice for Sonika" petition has been launched by activist Pranadhika Sinha and "Voice for Vikram" has been started by the actor's friends.
The Kolkata police had been accused of going slow in the case under pressure from powerful members of the Trinamool Congress government