Malayalam actress assault case: Actor Dileep arrested, victim’s family
Dileep Charged with Abduction and Gangrape, Claims He was Trapped
‘I Was Trapped, ‘Jailed Kerala Actor Dileep Says In Actress’ Kidnapping
Hero turns villain: Actor Dileep arrested
KOCHI: Almost five months after the sensational abduction and rape of a well-known actress, top Malayalam actor Dileepwas arrested on Monday for alleged conspiracy in the crime, a ‘climax’ that exposed the seamy side of Mollywood.
Dileep was taken for questioning in the morning – the second time in as many weeks — and sources said the police finally decided to arrest him based on concrete proof of his close relationship with the main accused ‘Pulsar’ Suni.
“Dileep has been arrested. I cannot reveal any other details. No other person has been arrested as of now,” state police chief Loknath Behera confirmed. The actor was arrested after a marathon questioning lasting eight hours which followed a similarly lengthy interrogation of Suni on Sunday.
Dileep had all along vehemently denied knowing Suni, and in his 13-hour-long interrogation by the Special Investigation Team (SIT) probing the case on June 28 had accused a section of the Malayalam film industry of trying to frame him in the case. As a very popular actor known for many memorable comedy-laced roles, Dileep’s arrest has exposed the Malayalam movie industry’s dark underbelly, with its producer-underworld nexus and where actresses and women technicians remain extremely vulnerable.
The police has already filed a chargesheet, where the prime accused is charged with rape. A secondary chargesheet on the conspiracy angle will be filed soon. The SIT is relying on electronic evidence including recordings of phone conversations.
According to police sources, Suni was allegedly given a ‘quotation’ (a contract) to sexually assault the actress and record the gross visuals on a mobile phone camera. The actress was abducted and raped in a moving car on the night of February 17 by Suni and four others.
Police said the sexual assault was motivated by Dileep’s “personal grudge” against the actress and not, as was speculated widely, due to a major real estate deal gone wrong. The actor, according to sources, had tried for the last two years to sabotage the career of the actress.
The SIT had examined interviews given by the actress to the media after the crime, where she had hinted that some persons within the industry tried to sabotage her career. Police also found evidence of Suni frequenting shooting locations of Dileep’s movies and also found major contradictions in Dileep’s statements. The conspiracy investigation was triggered following the revelations by a man called Jinson, Suni’s fellow inmate in the Kakannad sub-jail. Jinson’s statement was recorded by SIT which led them to the main conspirators.
Most actors and moviemakers were tight-lipped following the arrest and refused to comment.
“He controlled superstars of the Malayalam film industry but they never showed the courage to remove him as a prominent office bearer of the actors’ association. It is pathetic that the superstars failed to utter a single word against this actor after his name cropped up in the case. The association too failed to support to the actress and it is a big shame,” well-known director Vinayan told TOI.