Pic shows Dileep with Balachandra Kumar in Dec 2016 — raising doubts on actor’s claim

TNM has learnt that the new evidence will be used to foil Dileep’s repeated claims that the director had not visited his house on December 26, 2016.
The photograph of actor Dileep and director Balachandrakumar, submitted as evidence to court
The photograph of actor Dileep and director Balachandrakumar, submitted as evidence to court
Written by:

When director Balachandra Kumar said that he had met Pulsar Suni — the prime accused in the 2017 case concerning the sexual assault of a Malayalam actor — at Dileep's house in Aluva in December 2016, the actor had refuted this claim. TNM has learnt that the police have submitted to the court photographs from both Balachandra Kumar and Dileep's phones, allegedly taken on the day. The photographs show Dileep in a white shirt and Balachandra Kumar in a checquered shirt, smiling into the camera.

Balachandra Kumar's main revelation was that he had visited Dileep on December 26, 2016, precisely a day after the latter's housewarming event in Aluva. According to the filmmaker, Dileep's brother Anoop and he had gone out in a car to get some food, when Dileep asked Anoop to drop a man at the bus stop. The man had, at this point, introduced himself to Balachandra Kumar as Suni, and Anoop told him he was better known as ‘Pulsar’ Suni, the director had alleged. He also stated that Anoop had asked 'Pulsar' Suni if he would be able to carry 'a large amount of cash' on the bus. After this incident, Dileep had asked Balachandra Kumar not to reveal this detail to anyone, the filmmaker had told the police.

However, Dileep — through his petition dated January 22, 2022 — contended that such a meeting did not take place, further alleging that this detail was concocted by Balachandra Kumar and the police, and that Pulsar Suni had never made such a claim that he had visited Dileep at his house. "The 1st accused (Pulsar Suni) never had a story of interaction with Mr. Balachandra Kumar or 2nd petitioner (Anoop) at any time or going to the house of the 1st petitioner (Dileep) (sic)," the petition read. Even during a recent interrogation, Dileep had apparently denied that Balachandra Kumar had met him in his house on the said date.

The main evidence that Balachandra Kumar had as proof of his presence at Dileep's house was a photograph they took in the latter's house. Now, the prosecution has submitted the photographs of the duo, found in Dileep's phone, to the court. The date card of the photo reveals that it was taken on December 26, 2016, the investigators have said. 

Director Balachandra Kumar's selfie at Dileep's house

The case concerns the abduction and sexual assault of a woman actor in Kochi on February 17, 2017. The assault was recorded by the perpetrators, seemingly with the intent of blackmailing her. On February 23, Pulsar Suni and a few others were arrested in the case. Suni, a driver, had reportedly maintained close relations with many prominent people in the Malayalam film industry. In July 2017, the Aluva police arrested Dileep in the case, in a move that came as a rude shock to those in the industry. A chargesheet was filed, in which Dileep was arraigned as the eighth accused. It was alleged that Dileep had paid contract money to Pulsar Suni to abduct and assault the woman actor, record visuals of the assault, and hand them over to Dileep.

It was when the investigation in this case was about to come to a closure that Balachandra Kumar — a filmmaker who claimed to be a friend of Dileep — came out with the allegation that he had met Pulsar Suni at Dileep's residence. The director said that he had met with the actor regarding the production of a movie named Pickpocket.

This led to further probe into the case, and on May 28, 2022, the prosecution stated that some crucial evidence has been uncovered in the past few months, asking the High Court for more time to finish the investigation. The digital data retrieved as part of the investigation also included certain photographs retrieved from the phone of Anoop, that contain detailed second-by-second commentary of the visuals of the sexual assault. The prosecution's argument is that Dileep either had the original visuals of the attack or a copy of it, or else such a detailed account including time codes in the video could not have been noted down.

Related Stories

No stories found.
The News Minute