Chandigarh: Girl places hidden camera in her PG facility, arrested
Her 30-year-old male friend also arrested; camera discovered in bathroom by another paying guest; forensic probe underway, say Chandigarh Police
Police have arrested a 22-year-old girl and her 30-year-old male friend for placing a hidden camera in the common bathroom of her paying guest accommodation in Sector 22, inhabited by four more women.
The girl, who hails from Saharanpur in Uttar Pradesh, claimed that she installed the camera on the instructions of her friend, Amit Handa, a resident of Sector 21. While she is preparing for IELTS, Handa is unemployed, said police.
The matter came to fore on November 26 after another paying guest, a 39-year-old woman from Fazilka, noticed the camera’s light on entering the bathroom without switching on the light.
Alarmed after discovering the camera, she alerted a friend and the house owner, who further sounded the police. A team responded to the scene and initiated investigation, zeroing in on the 22-year-old girl as the culprit.
Living in the second-floor paying guest facility since 2020, the complainant told police that the camera was placed near the geyser.
Had live stream access on mobile phones
Digging into the matter, police found that the accused purchased the camera from Sector 45, even though she claimed that it was provided by her friend Amit Handa three days back.
“The camera was Wi-Fi enabled and its live feed could be accessed via mobile phone. Both accused had access to its live stream on their mobile phones. It did not have recording facility,” said a senior police, officer privy to the investigation.
Police have sent their mobile phones and the camera to Central Forensic Science Laboratory for examination. So far, no videos had been recovered, the officer said.
However, police maintained that only the forensic report will give clear details of the content produced by the camera.
My friend blackmailed me: Accused
As per a senior police officer, the accused girl claimed that Handa had been blackmailing her. “She contends that Handa used to extort money from her and after she ran out of money, he directed her to install the hidden camera,” said the officer, adding that it was on her disclosure that Handa was arrested.
Both were eventually released on bail. They have been booked under Sections 354-C (voyeurism) and 509 (word, gesture or act intended to insult the modesty of a woman) of the Indian Penal Code, along with Section 66E (violation of privacy) of the Information Technology Act, at the Sector 17 police station.