- “Peepli (Live)” co-director Mahmood Farooqui faces minimum 7 years in prison
- The victim, whose identity is protected by law, was in India conducting research
A New Delhi trial court found Farooqui, best known as co-director of the 2010 film, “Peepli (Live),” guilty Saturday of raping the 35-year-old woman in the nation’s first conviction for an oral sex rape, prosecution lawyer advocate Vrinda Grover told CNN.
India has been taking a closer look at its rape laws after the notorious gang rape and murder of a 23-year old woman on a bus in 2012 as it circled through the streets of New Delhi. A legal amendment was added in 2013 that included forced oral sex as rape in criminal law, Grover said.
The victim in Saturday’s conviction, whose identity is protected by law, was in India conducting research and was introduced to Farooqui through a mutual friend, Grover said.
She was “invited by Mr. Farooqui to his South Delhi residence in March 2015 where he forced himself on (her),” she said. “This case is an example that rape is not a class problem and even rich and affluent people are indulged in such crime.”
Farooqui faces a minimum sentence of 7 years in prison. Sentencing is scheduled for Tuesday.
India’s response to sexual attacks
Critics say India, like many nations, suffers from a culture that has traditionally been relatively lax about responding to sexual attacks. Few women who’ve been raped want to appear in court for fear of being stigmatized and traumatized. The National Crime Records Bureau’s annual report of crime statistics reported in 2013 that a woman was raped somewhere in India every 20 minutes, and the number of children raped had increased by 336% in the past 10 years.
The country’s conviction rate for rape cases in 2011 was 25%, although by some estimates only one in 10 rapes was reported .