Chandigarh stalking: Accused's father, BJP leader, claims no pressure on police
Vikas Barala (23) and Ashish Kumar (27) were arrested for allegedly stalking the woman. However, both were released later on bail as they were booked under bailable sections of the IPC and the Motor Vehicles Act. Photograph: (Facebook)
Haryana BJP chief Subhash Barala's son, whose son Vikas Barala is an accused in the stalking of a young woman on Friday night, today (August 8) denied that there was any political pressure on the police.
Varnika Kundu, daughter of an IAS officer, was allegedly stalked through the streets of Chandigarh on Friday night by Vikas Barnala and his friend in an SUV. In a Facebook post, Varnika alleged that the men blocked her way, banged on her windows and even tried to force the door open.
Chandigarh Police, who have retrieved footage of five CCTV cameras in connection with the stalking, rejected claims that they are under political pressure.
Subhash Barala said that Varnika Kundu was like his daughter and claimed there was no pressure on the police from him or his party.
Opposition parties including the Indian National Lok Dal (INLD), the Congress and the CPI accused the Chandigarh Police of working under the pressure of the ruling BJP.
They had attacked Subhash Barnala and asked him to resign on moral grounds.
Opposition parties in Haryana staged protests against the incident today and demanded a probe by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) or a sitting judge of the high court.
"Chandigarh Police has retrieved footage of 5 CCTV cameras on the route capturing the chase of the victim's vehicle by the alleged vehicle," a Chandigarh Police official was quoted as saying by PTI.
It was reported on Monday that cameras along the route that Kundu had taken were not functional.
Vikas Barala (23) and Ashish Kumar (27) were earlier arrested for allegedly stalking the woman. However, both were released later on bail as they were booked under bailable sections of the IPC and the Motor Vehicles Act.
Chandigarh BJP vice president Ramveer Bhatti sparked a furore today after he blamed Varnika for “staying out so late in the night”.
“Such cases tend to occur and the probability is higher for girls being stalked if they are out at odd hours,” he said.
Varnika Kundu hit back against the Haryana Deputy President's sexist remark, saying why she was out late at night was "none of his business."
She added that it was because of "men like these" that going out late in the night was unsafe for women.