Accused Of Rape, Varun Kumar Withdraws From FIH Pro League, Takes Urgent Leave To Fight Legal Battle

Feb 8, 2024

Arjuna Award-winning Indian hockey player Varun Kumar, accused of rape under the stringent POCSO Act, has pulled out of the FIH Pro League in Bhubaneswar to explore his legal options against the allegation, which he described as a “planned attempt to extort money” from him. Is. , The 28-year-old has been “immediately discharged” from national duty by Hockey India as he said the incident has taken a toll on his “physical and mental health”. Bengaluru Police have registered a case after a woman accused Varun of sexually assaulting her multiple times when she was a minor.

The 22-year-old, in her complaint filed on Monday, said she came in contact with Varun through Instagram in 2018 and when she was 17, the player raped her on multiple occasions after promising her marriage.

In a letter to Hockey India president Dilip Tirkey, which is in the possession of PTI, Varun claimed that the complaint against him is false and a misuse of the “state machinery”.

“Through media reports I came to know that a false and frivolous case has been filed against me by a girl with whom I was previously in a relationship and the said case has been converted into an FIR in Bengaluru, however no one has contacted me. Police officers in this regard,” Varun's letter, sent to Tirkey on Wednesday, read.

“The above matter is nothing but a deliberate attempt to extort money from me and tarnish my reputation and image as I am a skilled hockey player and have played for India and am an Arjuna awardee and she knows that this This kind of case can tarnish my reputation and image.” Career and Image.” Varun, who is with the Indian team in Bhubaneswar for the Pro League matches, said he will fight the charges legally.

Varun wrote, “…I will require immediate leave from the Academy to avail of my legal remedies and legal rights and moreover, given the circumstances, I will unfortunately not be in a position to participate in the Pro League.”

“This incident has had a very bad impact on my physical and mental health and it is a very difficult time for me and my family… Being a sportsman, I have always been taught to fight till the end and hence I would like to thank you for your support in this Request difficult times,” he said.

Apart from Tirkey, this letter has also been sent to men's team head coach Craig Fulton and HI general secretary Bholanath Singh.

In her FIR, the woman has alleged that after getting in touch on Instagram in 2018, Varun insisted on meeting her and she agreed after some of his friends convinced her. Eventually both became friends and got into a relationship.

According to the woman, he took her to a hotel in Jayanagar, Bengaluru in July 2019 and had physical relations with her despite her being a minor and her protests.

According to HI sources, the victim was a volleyball player at the National Center of Excellence at SAI, Bengaluru and the relationship between the two started there.

However, she is no longer an athlete and is currently working as an air hostess.

The woman alleges that after her father's death last year, Varun stopped responding to her calls and messages. According to her FIR, Varun came to meet her after the accident but after that he started distancing himself.

She said that when she last approached the police, Varun resumed talking to her. However, he did not approach her when she stuck to the topic of marriage.

After this he threatened that if she put pressure on him, he would upload her pictures on social media.

Varun hails from Himachal Pradesh and made his debut for India in 2017. He was promoted as DSP in Punjab Police. He was awarded the Arjuna Award in 2021 and was part of the 2022 Commonwealth Games silver-winning team.

(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)

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