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Fabindia case voyeur identified, case solved: Goa police

Seven FabIndia officials, including the MD and CEO, were on Thursday granted interim bail till April 23 by a local court.

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fabindia

The Goa police on Friday said they have zeroed in on the FabIndia employee who is alleged to have tampered with the CCTV cameras at its outlet in Candolim in Goa in a case of voyeurism, which came to light after Union Human Resource Development Minister Smriti Zubin Irani raised an alarm over a camera peeking into the trial room last week.

A charge sheet would be filed soon, police said. The offender, Crime Branch sources said, was one of the four FabIndia employees — Prashant Naik, Karim Lakhani, Raju Payanche and Paresh Bhagat — who were initially arrested and later granted bail. Crime Branch Superintendent of Police, Karthik Kashyap confirmed to The Hindu that they had “solved the case” and “zeroed in” on the person believed to be the culprit.

Meanwhile, seven FabIndia officials, including the MD and CEO, were on Thursday granted interim bail till April 23 by a local court, which however, ordered them to remain present before the Crime Branch for inquiry.

The outlet’s manager Chaitrali Sawant was also granted anticipatory bail earlier this week.

Defending reputation

The iconic brand with an annual turnover of Rs. 760 crore, 187 stores in 75 cities and eight stores abroad, finds itself defending a reputation built carefully over the last four decades.

For a brand known for its scrupulous business practices and for having a large number of women employees on its workforce, which is well above the industry average, and known for creating products using craft-based skills and techniques, one employee’s act finds the company defending its hard-earned reputation.

FabIndia officials quizzed

FabIndia officials on Friday said they were cooperating with the Goa police authorities in investigations into the high profile case of voyeurism at the retailer’s outlet in Candolim in Goa last week. The top management of FabIndia, including managing director William Bissel, chief executive officer Subrata Dutta and regional manager Ruchira Pujari, on Friday appeared before the police for questioning. The police have recorded their statements.

“There is zero tolerance for this kind of thing. We are known for gender sensitivity and the numbers of women we employ. We haven't yet seen the video as that is with the police but we stand by statement that it is a strict policy not to have any hidden camera or camera for anything other than security purposes,” an official from FabIndia said.

Having started off with supplying hand woven textiles and durries to a number of stores abroad, William Bissel shifted the focus to the domestic market when he took over as managing director from his father John Bissel, who established the brand. The product line too diversified to include jewellery, giftware, organic foods and personal care products. Fabindia now has investments from Azim Premji of Wipro and L'Capital, the investment arm of Louis Vuitton.Hindu

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