[dropcap]T[/dropcap]oday, I was shocked after receiving a call from a woman who was an employee of Sudarshan Channel. She narrated about the trauma and atrocities she underwent, from the other side of the mobile phone. I met her several times with Suresh Chavhanke, owner and editor of the channel. I also had some doubts in my mind on their behaviour in public places because they both used to behave like husband and wife. Initially, when I met her I thought she is his wife, but later on he introduced her as his secretary to me. After repeated visits, I heard about several gossips within the channel about them. However, I just ignored them because nowadays there are such trends that when men and women work together and if they are compatible with each other people look them suspiciously. Belonging to the same fraternity, I know that gender differences are not there in this industry and we have to work as a team.
However, her call on Sunday totally shattered my belief. The victim was in pain while expressing her saga. Being unbiased, I called Mr. Chavhanke to know about his version but he alleged that it’s a conspiracy of Samajwadi Party’s Muslim face Azam Khan and AIMIM Chief Akbaruddin Owaisi to malign his name. The victim possesses call records, video tapes, hotel details where they stayed and many other evidences but despite that Chavhanke accused the victim of hatching a conspiracy against him.
Ever since the Modi government came to power, this channel has claimed to be the saviour of Hindu religion. He flaunts his pictures with Prime Minister Narendra Modi to all bigwigs in the power corridors. Some even say this channel is funded by RSS and some right wing organisations. Chavhanke, three days after an FIR was lodged against him for rape, attempt to murder and fraud is yet to be arrested. The FIR also names Narayan Sai, son of self-proclaimed godman Asaram Bapu, for attempt to rape. Sai was even earlier charged with molestation after a Surat-based woman lodged an FIR against him in Jahangirpura Police Station of Surat, accusing him of exploitation and repeated rape between 2002 and 2005. He evaded arrest for two months and was apprehended and arrested on 4th December 2013 in a combined operation of Delhi, Gujarat, Punjab and Haryana police along the Delhi-Haryana border and brought to Surat for custody. On 6th December the High Court of Gujarat dismissed his status as absconder; however he remained under arrest for other charges including rape, unnatural sex, molestation, wrongful confinement, unlawful assembly, rioting and criminal intimidation.
Sai was also accused of bribing the local authorities holding him in custody in an attempt to have the case of sexual abuse against him weakened or dismissed. Narayan Sai was released from Surat Jail on interim bail on 26th May 2015 to attend to his ailing mother Laxmi Devi in Ahmedabad. He was then sent back to jail on 29th May 2015.
When Asaram Bapu was arrested for raping a minor, Sudarshan was the only channel which was vocal about his innocence. When I spoke to victim then I came to know this entire episode was funded by Asaram Bapu’s Ashram. Many erred spiritual leaders were pay master to this news channels to save their souls. The victim also alleged that Chavhanke sent her to the ‘ashram’ of Narayan Sai in Karol Bagh, New Delhi, in September, 2013. There Sai attempted to rape her. He touched her inappropriately. The victim said that she was betrayed and abused by him all the time. She also added that Chavhanke has a habit of luring girls and molesting them. Some sleep with him with consent and some out of compulsion. They used to share one room where ever they travelled.
According to the FIR, the victim accused Chavhanke of raping her and attempting unnatural sex with her on October 20 at his news network office. What an appalling situation, the lady had to satisfy him in the office, hotel room and where ever he gets his libido high. She gave him enough time to marry her and sort the differences but when he betrayed, she lodged a police complaint. Meanwhile, right-wing groups came out in Chavhanke’s defence, alleging that he is a victim of an ‘international conspiracy’ by ‘jihadists’.
Suresh Chavhanke was born on 18th February 1972 in Shirdi. Yes, he is Maharashtrian based in Delhi. He is known as ‘Hindu nationalist’ journalist and anchoring show called as Bindas Bol on his Sudarshan Channel. He is considered as one the speakers and orators on ‘nationalist and Hindu matters’. Also, many moderates consider his speeches and shows to be divisive and communally motivated. A number of problems of Hindus are being brought to the notice from ‘Sudarshan Channel’. They believe that an increased interaction between Hindu organisations and ‘Sudarshan Channel’ will impart momentum to the mission of Hindutva. The channel has also handled the issue of ‘Love Jihad’ three times so far. The rulers and politicians are being awakened through presentation of various problems.
If you believe in Indian Constitution after FIR, the accused should be arrested and the court needs to deliver further verdict. In the corridors of power, influential people walk away free while victim is left helpless and quiet. This story is very similar to the Madhur Bhandarkar- Preeti Jain case.
Both involved people are Hindus victims. I am also a Hindu writing this article. This is where Law should hold its ground and should follow routine unbiased justice towards the accused.
Let’s Justice prevail.
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