Police issue lookout notice against Vijay Babu

Actor and producer Vijay Babu has been slapped with two cases.

Actor and producer Vijay Babu has been slapped with two cases.

The Kochi City police have further tightened the noose around the actor-producer Vijay Babu, who stands booked in two cases, including for rape, by issuing a lookout circular against him across all airports and searching his multiple properties for evidence.

Babu was initially slapped with a case for rape by the Ernakulam South police on a petition by an upcoming actor, who had acted in one of the films produced by his production company and was released on an OTT platform last year. The second case was registered under IPC Section 228A (disclosure of the identity of the victim in certain offences) after he had gone on Facebook live revealing the name of the survivor.

“Prima facie, the evidence suggests that the charge of rape is true. For, there is an element of fear and exploitation involved,” said C.H. Nagaraju, District Police Chief (Kochi City).

It has been reported that the police are convinced that the petition ticks all the boxes needed to register a case for such a serious offence. In her social media statement, the survivor had accused Babu of physical and sexual assault amounting to rape after intoxicating her using alcohol and drugs. She was scared of reporting the case earlier due to the clout and influence wielded by the accused, she said.

It has emerged that the South police had registered the case for rape last week but had kept it confidential to gather evidence considering the high-profile nature of the accused. However, Babu probably got wind of it and fled the country, sources said.

Considering that a lookout notice has been issued against him, Babu will be nabbed the moment he lands at any airport in the country. The police are also inspecting his multiple properties in the city for evidence. Police have reportedly received evidence from two properties. Babu’s decision to reveal the name of the survivor seems to have further worsened the situation for him. “We will seek exemplary punishment against him for that offence since naming the survivor is a dangerous trend and further added to her misery,” said Mr. Nagaraju.

Though the survivor had urged more women allegedly victimised by Babu to speak up, the police have so far not received any fresh complaints.   The police have already recorded the statement of the survivor before the magistrate under Section 164 of the CrPC and conducted a medical examination of the victim.

The police consider Babu’s social media outburst as self-incriminating and corroborating the survivor on various counts. While Babu is learnt to have moved for anticipatory bail, police remain confident that it is likely to be turned down for his indiscretion of naming the survivor. His social media adventure is also seen as an open challenge to the rule of law.

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Printable version | Jun 24, 2022 1:07:07 pm | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Kochi/police-issue-lookout-notice-against-malayalam-actor-producer-vijay-babu/article65362671.ece