Co-director of Peepli (Live) convicted of rape

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Mahmood Farooqui…May face life in prison.

A trial court on Saturday convicted Bollywood filmmaker Mahmood Farooqui of charges of raping an American woman at his south Delhi residence last year.

The Judge found Farooqui, who had been on bail, guilty under IPC Section 376 (punishment for rape), and ordered that he be taken into judicial custody.

The court will hear arguments on sentencing on August 2. The offence of rape entails a minimum punishment of seven years’ rigorous imprisonment and a maximum punishment of imprisonment for life.

Farooqui, co-director of the 2010 satirical comedy Peepli (Live), and an exponent of the centuries’ old art of Urdu storytelling called Dastangoi, was accused of raping the 30-year-old research scholar from Columbia University at his home in south Delhi’s Sukhdev Vihar on March 28, 2015.

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The woman had first met Farooqui in Varanasi and in her complaint, she had alleged that Farooqui had raped her when she had gone to meet him subsequently for help on her research.

During the trial, the woman alleged that after raping her, Farooqui had apologised in several emails. The email exchanges and call detail records were key pieces of corroborative evidence presented by the prosecution during the trial, besides the testimony of the complainant.

The woman told the court that she had texted — and later, told over the phone — details of the incident to a friend who had introduced her to Farooqui.

The complainant told the court that she “did not resist” the rape because she feared she would be killed like the victim of the December 16, 2012 Delhi gangrape. – CINEWS

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