A team of Mumbai Police set out on Thursday morning to search for Arunabh Kumar, CEO of digital entertainment start-up The Viral Fever (TVF), a day after he was booked on molestation charges.
Kumar is at the centre of a controversy after a woman detailed in an anonymous blog post the sexual harassment she faced while working for him as a subordinate. Soon after, other women had come forward with similar accusations.
An FIR has been registered under section 354 (sexual harassment) and 509 (word, gesture or act intended to insult the modesty of a woman) against Kumar.
The police said that they had not yet received any information on Kumar applying for anticipatory bail but a senior police official said, “It is a non-bailable offence and we will definitely be opposing his bail plea. We want to arrest him.”
The team went from MIDC police station to the TVF office, which is within their jurisdiction, but Kumar was not there. “We are searching for him but are unable to find him,” said a police official.
TVF has trashed the allegations made against Kumar, calling them false, baseless and unverified.
The molestation case was registered by a 26-year-old woman, who works in a production house and is a writer. The incident allegedly took place in May 2016.
Her blog post read, “Right from Pitchers to Tripling, I was molested. Be it in parties where Arunabh would try to lift me or would try and fall on me pretending he is drunk.” She wrote that one night, he apparently made such strong advances that she had to lock herself up in the office bathroom until he went away. When she told her parents about it, he called her father and allegedly told him that his daughter was making up stories.
The MIDC police has urged other victims to come forward and promised a fair investigation, saying their identity will be kept a secret.