Vikas Barala, his friend get 2-day police custody
Vikas Barala, the son of a top BJP politician in Haryana, wept on Thursday as he was produced in court after his arrest for the attempted kidnapping of a woman in Chandigarh last week. He was sent to two days in police custody.
Haryana BJP chief Subhash Barala's 23-year-old son has admitted to the police that he chased Varnika Kundu on the streets on Friday night, sources said this morning. In court, he said her kidnapping charge was just her "apprehension", that the case against him was based on "media trial".
"If they wanted to kidnap her, they would have been with the girl," Barala junior's lawyer argued. "Even on Wednesday they were called for interrogation- this is a media trial and there is pressure," he said.
The police say there are witnesses and CCTV evidence against Vikas and his friend Ashish; they had earlier been let off on bail but now face up to seven years in jail.
Varnika Kundu, the daughter of a bureaucrat, had posted on Facebook her account of being chased for several kilometres by Vikas and Ashish. The 29-year-old DJ said they blocked her car, banged on her window and even tried to force open her door. The chase was caught on six CCTVs, the footage showing a white SUV racing behind Ms Kundu's black sedan.
Vikas and Ashish were let off within hours of their arrest because they were only charged with stalking and drink driving, which allow bail. The two had refused to give their blood and urine samples the night they were arrested. Sources in the home ministry say a doctor called to examine them noted in a report that they reeked of alcohol.
After Kundu's Facebook post went viral and led to massive public outrage, the police were accused of trying to dilute the case under pressure from the state's ruling BJP.
On Wednesday, five days after the incident, the two were arrested again and charged with attempted kidnapping, which does not allow bail.