Odisha Sun Times Bureau
New Delhi/Bhubaneswar, Mar 26:
A New Delhi court today extended the police remand of Odisha-based builder Subrat Sahu alias ‘Kalia’ by seven days after his one-day remand expired today.
A city court today allowed the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) to interrogate Kalia arrested in connection with a sex video circulated on mobile phones through messaging service WhatsApp.
Chief Metropolitan Magistrate Sanjay Khanagwal allowed the Central agency seven-day custodial interrogation of Sahu, who was arrested from Bhubaneshwar on Monday and brought to Delhi on transit remand on Wednesday.
“Heard the plea of CBI to take the accused on remand for further investigation. Police remand is granted for seven days,” the Magistrate said.
The CBI had moved an application seeking ten-day custody of accused, who was produced in court today, saying it needed to take him to Bhubaneshwar to ascertain the place and time of offence and for corroboration of evidence.
Notably, metropolitan magistrate Sujit Saurabh had yesterday sent Sahu to a day’s police remand saying it would suffice for investigation and further extension could be sought if required.
Counsel for the CBI and senior public prosecutor AK Singh had sought 10 days’ remand on the ground that a longer remand was needed to identify victims, places of occurrence, modus operandi of the accused and his associates, recovery of articles including mobiles, camera etc which are used in the offences.
It may be recalled that Sahu was arrested on March 24 after the Supreme Court ordered the CBI to probe the videos of rapes or gang rapes of unidentified victims uploaded on social networking sites, including WhatsApp, by unknown people.
CBI booked Sahu on charges of common intention, propagating obscene material and assault to woman with intent to outrage her modesty under provisions of Indian Penal Code, besides sections of the Information Technology Act relating to violation of privacy and publishing or transmitting obscene material in electronic form.
The apex court had taken suo motu note of a letter of Hyderabad-based NGO Prajwala on the posting of two rape videos on WhatsApp and asked CBI to launch a probe forthwith to nab the culprits.
The agency has lodged eight regular cases (RCs) and a preliminary investigation and has so far, identified culprits in two cases.
A CBI team had conducted simultaneous raids at four places, including his rented house at VSS Nagar (Plot No. BL 5) and his office and residence at GGP Colony (Plot No. 912/913) in Bbhubaneswar on Tuesday. The cops seized several pen drives, CDs and incriminating materials from his office and residence. Besides, a diary containing contact details of several journalists and police personnel was also seized.