While Shah Rukh Khan’s driver has confessed to raping the former maid of a Bollywood actress, as reported by mid-day yesterday, the contours of the case have shifted, with the police finding out that the rape survivor is not a minor.
In her statement to the police while filing the FIR yesterday, the woman had stated that her age is 17, but her Aadhaar card shows that she is 24 years old. The cops are investigating why she gave them the wrong age in statement.
It has also come to light that the woman did not quit her job of her own accord, but was asked to leave on June 18. The phone number for the maid that the driver, Rajendrakumar Gautam alias Pintu Mishra (34), had got through a common friend, was of the actress’ house and she was the one who had answered when Gautam had called.
Thinking that he was speaking to the maid, Gautam told the woman that she would gain nothing by working at the actress’ house and he could get her better jobs. The actress, who was pretending to be the maid, heard everything. Infuriated, she removed the maid from her services. Incidentally, Gautam had called at a time when the actress was seeking to hire two more maids.
Desperate to get a job, the woman went to Gautam and, while continuing to make promises, he would take her out on his bike whenever he got time. The same thing happened on June 20 as well. The duo was out on the bike before boarding a train to Nallasopara, where Gautam allegedly raped the woman.
Gautam, who was produced in Bandra court yesterday and was remanded in police custody till July 1, has confessed to the crime and said that his intentions were to get physical with the woman from the very beginning. He has been charged under sections pertaining to rape and kidnapping under the Indian Penal Code.
“The accused has confessed that his intentions were very clear from the beginning. He wanted to get in touch with the woman at any cost and get physical with her, which is why he pursued her,” said an official from the Bandra police.
The officer said cops won’t be taking Shah Rukh Khan’s or the actress’ statement in the case as of now. The actress’ statement may be taken at a later stage as she had spoken to Gautam on the phone. He added that they are investigating whether Gautam had physically abused other women in the past.
While the woman was sent to a hospital for a medical test yesterday, the cops will take the accused to the Nallasopara hotel, where he allegedly committed the crime, to get evidence and the proper sequence of events.
The woman, who has studied till Std XI, is a native of Latur and had come to Mumbai to look for work as the family’s financial situation was bad. She had been working as a maid at the house of the actress — the ex-wife of a former cricketer for six months.
Gautam had been working as Khan’s driver for over a year and had been recommended by a staff member at his Bandra bungalow, Mannat. An official said that Gautam was picked up outside Mannat by a police team on Wednesday.
When the team reached the bungalow, they found him sitting outside and asked him where Gautam was. He identified himself and was taken to the police station.
The survivor is still in a state of shock. The cops said they have informed her father, and she will be kept at the police station or sent to a remand home till he arrives in the city. “The woman is extremely scared of going back to her village, but she doesn’t want to stay in Mumbai anymore. She fears that her family and everyone else will come to know about the incident. But we had to inform her father, who will come to take her custody,” an officer said.