Kerala HC rejects actor Dileep’s plea to quash FIR

Kochi, April 19 : Kerala High Court on Tuesday dismissed a plea moved by Malayalam actor Dileep seeking to quash the FIR filed by the Crime Branch against him and five others for allegedly threatening investigation officials probing the 2017 actress assault case. Justice Ziyad Rahman A.A also rejected the actor’s plea to transfer of the ongoing probe to the CBI alleging that the aggrieved parties in the case were some senior state police officials. During the hearing, the court observed that any kind of interference at this stage will affect the probe agency’s effort to collect evidence in support of the allegation against the actor. Pointing out that no innocent person should be p shed, it said proper p shment should be granted to the real culprits. Lack of evidence in the priliminary stage of probe should not be a reason to quash the case, it said adding that, hence, the probe should be continued and a request to transfer the case to another agency cannot be allowed in this situation. Also there is no evidence to prove the ulterior motives of the police officials in the case, the court added. Earlier, the actor alleged that aggrieved parties in the case were some senior state police officials. Seeking the transfer of the case to the CBI, the actor alleged that the case was a fabricated one with ulterior motives and claimed that there is no evidence to prove the case filed against him on the basis of a statement made by Director Balachandra Kumar. On February 21, the Court allowed the survivor in the 2017 actress assault case to implead in the case in which Malayalam actor Dileep was opposing further probe. The actress argued that Dileep has no right to demand quashing of re-investigation in the fresh case, registered against him and five others. The actress, who was allegedly sexually assaulted in a moving car in Kochi in 2017, approached the court soon after Dileep was granted anticipatory bail in the case. Dileep also filed a petition seeking the rejection of the FIR against them. On February 7, the Court granted anticipatory bail to Dileep and others in the case. Pronouncing the verdict, Justice P Gopinath said the prosecution can apply for arrest if the bail conditions are violated by the accused. Earlier, Justice Gopinath who raised doubts over legal validity of the case, granted three days to the Crime Branch to interrogate the actor on January 23, 24 and 25, 2022. The Crime Branch team also interrogated other five accused in the case and submitted a report to the court in a sealed cover. The non-bailable case was filed on the basis of a audio clip allegedly threatening the officials and a statement by Director Balachandra Kumar. DS GK

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