Raj Kundra walks out of Mumbai jail after bail in pornographic films case


PTI, Sep 21, 2021, 12:42 PM IST

Mumbai: Businessman Raj Kundra on Tuesday walked out of a Mumbai jail, a day after a magistrate court here granted bail to the key accused in the case of a pornographic film in which he was arrested two months ago.

Kundra was released from the Arthur Road jail shortly after 11.30 am, a jail official said.

Chief Metropolitan Magistrate SB Bhajipale on Monday allowed Kundra’s bail application on furnishing a bond of Rs 50,000.

Kundra’s associate and co-accused Ryan Thorpe, who was arrested along with him on July 19, was also granted bail by the court in the case pertaining to the alleged creation of pornographic films and publishing them through some apps.

The 46-year-old businessman was lodged in Arthur Road Jail in central Mumbai under judicial custody.

Kundra, the husband of Bollywood actor Shilpa Shetty, was arrested by the Mumbai police’s crime branch after being booked under relevant sections of the Indian Penal Code, the Information Technology Act, and the Indecent Representation of Women (Prohibition) Act.

Kundra moved a bail plea before the metropolitan magistrate court on Saturday, days after the police filed a supplementary charge sheet in the case.

In the plea, filed through advocate Prashant Patil, Kundra claimed there was not even an iota of evidence to date with the prosecution that would connect the app ‘Hotshots’, used in the alleged porn films racket, with an offense under law.

As per the probe agency, the ‘Hotshots’ app was being used by accused persons for uploading and streaming obscene content.

The businessman claimed there was no evidence of him being ”actively” involved in the creation of alleged questionable porn content.

Kundra alleged he was falsely implicated, was not even named in the FIR and was dragged by the respondent (police) in the case.

The businessman claimed in the plea that he is being made a ”scapegoat” for reasons best known to investigators.

There is not a single allegation in the entire supplementary charge-sheet against Kundra, Patil submitted before the court. Contents of the complaint in the case do not disclose any prima facie offence against Kundra, he said.

The public prosecutor opposed Kundra’s application, saying just because the charge-sheet has been filed, it does not imply bail is to be granted to the accused.

Chief Metropolitan Magistrate Bhajipale, after hearing both sides, allowed Kundra’s application on furnishing a bail bond of Rs 50,000.

The police, in their supplementary charge sheet, had claimed Kundra was the ”main facilitator” in the case and he along with other accused exploited young women struggling in the movie industry by filming them in obscene ways.

The nearly 1,500-page charge sheet against Kundra and Thorpe was filed in court on September 15 by the crime branch.

Besides Kundra and Thorpe, Yash Thakur, a resident of Singapore, and London-based Pardeep Bakshi have been shown as wanted accused in the charge sheet.

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