Mumbai: Filmmaker Madhur Bhandarkar has decided to challenge the magistrate court order that charged him with rape under threat of starlet Preeti Jain.
Starlet Preeti Jain had slapped a case of rape on the director in 2004 and had stated that he had taken sexual favours from her and had promised her the lead role in his film.
The court had summoned him on Monday in relation to the case and has issued process (first step for initiating trial against person) against Bhandarkar. The filmmaker has been asked to file his reply on October 18.
“The court has taken cognisance of Jain`s complaint after observing that, prima facie, a case of rape and criminal intimidation has been made out against Bhandarkar,” said Preeti Jain`s advocate Sushan Kunjuraman.
Following the court’s order, Bhandarkar issued a formal statement on his blog and stated that he would challenge the order at a higher court. The director said he had full faith in judiciary and would be proving himself innocent.
Madhur Bhandarkar has posted his official statement on his blog:
As the lower court has issued a process against me today, 19th September, 2011, for a case which has been going on for 7 years, I would like to state here after reading the judgment that we will challenge this order in higher courts and seek justice.
Background of the case: Initially, on 12th July 2004 complainant had sent a legal notice to me stating if I don’t cast her in my film as the leading lady within 48 hours of the legal notice served then she would adopt necessary criminal and civil legal proceedings against me by lodging a police complaint and complaining before the Hon’ble Court of Law against me for cheating, cohabitation caused by a man deceitfully inducing a belief of lawful marriage and criminal intimidation.
There was no whisper of rape charges in that notice. Then we came to know that on 9th July 2004 she had already sent a legal notice to one Mr Sohail Khan, an upcoming music director, stating that she is pregnant with his child, affirming that with a DNA test and she threatened him saying that if he doesn’t accept the paternity of the child then she would take legal action against him in 7 days. On 22nd July 2004, she filed a complaint with the police alleging me of raping her, for which I was granted bail in the session court which was upheld by the Hon’ble High Court.
The Hon’ble High Court had passed strong strictures against her saying her credibility has to be checked, she was trying to falsely implicate me, which cannot be ruled out. The Versova police has investigated this case twice, by two different officers and came to the conclusion that there is no case against me. They concluded it as B-summary as a false case. All the above documents supporting the facts are in the Hon’ble court. Trivia about her: I would also like to mention that she was arrested for hatching a plot to eliminate me in 2005, with the help of the underworld. She was arrest by Agripada police station and was behind bars for almost a month.
Now since the Magistrate Court has issued a process against me in this case, my lawyer will take all legal remedies. I have full faith and respect for the judiciary and I am confident of proving myself innocent.