Madhur Bhandarkar May Face Trial for Rape

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Fashion director Madhur Bhandarkar may have to face trial for the rape of aspiring actress Preeti Jain five years ago. Rejecting a second submission from the Versova police that the charges had no substance, RK Shaikh,the magistrate, said that the FIR (first information report) should proceed and ordered a further probe into the case. He heard a deposition from Preeti and reviewed a number of threatening text messages she is said to have reveived. “The magistrate has, in fact, said that he would conduct investigations into the matter himself and summoned Jain on December 22 to record her statement,” said her solicitor.

Jain has lodged a complaint under section 376 of the Indian Penal Code arguing that Bhandarkar had raped her on several occasions after promising to marry her and give her a role in a movie. In fact, he did neither. A counter charge that Jain had offered a bribe to gangster Arun Gawli to eliminate Bhandarkar has since fallen. Bhandarkar has been free on anticipatory bail since 2004 when the accusation was made.

Jain’s solicitor criticised the police investigation into the case and Preeti said, “The court’s order rejecting the report is a stamp on the genuineness of my case.” Madhur’s latest movie release is called Jail.

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