The father of the woman who had accused former Karnataka minister Ramesh Jarkiholi of sexual harassment has alleged that her daughter has been kidnapped, The Indian Express reported on Thursday.
Jarkiholi, a Bharatiya Janata Party leader, had resigned as the state’s water resources minister on March 3 after television channels aired images and played a video of a “sex CD” purportedly featuring him and the unidentified woman. He allegedly harassed the woman in return for a government job.
The Belagavi city police registered a complaint on Tuesday after the woman’s father said he was not able to contact his daughter since March 2, the day when the alleged tape was aired by local news channels. The complainant alleged that his daughter was abducted from her PG accommodation in Bengaluru and was being held captive at a secret location.
The complaint said the woman was “forced into filming fake indecent videos”, which was later shared with media to harass her.
According to the family, the daughter had told them her pictures had been morphed to create a “sex CD”. After this, she informed them that she was going to switch off her phone and go away for a while.
A member of the Belagavi police team investigating the woman’s disappearance told The Times of India that her mobile phone was last seen active in Delhi. There has been no activity since then.
The police have been searching for the woman and two others suspected to be her associates. “We have pasted notices for her to appear and provide her statement by assuring all protection,” a senior Bengaluru police officer told The Indian Express. “An email has been sent to her address. There has been no response whatsoever from her so far.”
Jarkiholi has denied the allegations levelled against him and claimed on March 9 that a top Karnataka leader had falsely implicated him in a sex scandal, which cost him his political career and reputation.
Jarkiholi suggested that the woman in the video had close ties with the alleged conspirators, claiming that she “has been given an apartment abroad”.
After he filed a complaint in the matter, a Special Investigation Team of Bengaluru Police was formed to investigate it.