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Chandigarh stalking case: Court charges Vikas Barala with abduction and stalking

Varnika, who attended the last two hearings, wasn’t present when the charges against Vikas and Ashish were framed.

india Updated: Oct 14, 2017 13:15 IST
Aneesha Bedi
Aneesha Bedi
Hindustan Times, Chandigar
Varnika Kundu,Vikas Barala,Stalking
(HT File Photo)

A local court in Chandigarh on Friday charged Vikas Barala, the son of Haryana Bharatiya Janata Party chief, and his friend Ashish with abduction, wrongfully restraining, and stalking city-based disc jockey Varnika Kundu, a case that caught national attention and stirred the larger debate over women safety.

The court of judicial magistrate first class (JMIC) Barjinder Pal Singh pronounced the order stating that all the charges in the FIR have been added in the chargesheet filed by the police.

The court adjourned the hearing in the case to October 27.

Varnika, the daughter of Haryana cadre Indian Administrative Service (IAS) officer VS Kundu, filed a complaint of stalking and attempting to abduct her in August against the accused.

She told the Hindustan Times she was very happy that the accused had been framed under kidnapping sections as well.

“I’m glad the judge sees it the same way I do. This will also set a precedent for the rich and powerful that they can’t get away by doing something like this,” the 29-year-old said.

Varnika, who attended the last two hearings, wasn’t present when the charges against Vikas and Ashish were framed. Her father, who was out town, also said he was happy to know of the development.

The arguments for framing of charges lasted for over an hour on Wednesday when defence counsel pleaded that the kidnapping charges should be removed as it was only a case of stalking as per allegations. However, the prosecution said Varnika’s car was “repeatedly followed” by the accused, one of whom even banged on the door of her car.

Police arrested the two men over her complaint but released them on bail as they had been booked under bailable sections of the Indian Penal Code and the Motor Vehicles Act. However, they were arrested again on August 9 after they joined the police investigation and charged with attempted abduction.

The two men were chargesheeted on September 21, 42 days after the incident took place.

The accused were denied bail on August 29, and on September 12, Vikas’ individual bail plea was also dismissed.

First Published: Oct 13, 2017 14:54 IST