Pastor held on dowry harassment, rape charges

While his wife alleged that he was harassing for additional dowry, nurse accuses him of sexually assaulting her

A church pastor was arrested by the Medipally police on Monday on charge of repeatedly sexually assaulting a 24-year-old woman on the promise of marriage and later refusing to tie the knot on flimsy grounds.

Later, the victim, who earlier worked as a staff nurse at a private hospital at Uppal, learnt that the pastor Sadu Chinna Venkateshwarlu (35) from Laxmi Nagar Colony, Boduppal, was married twice. “He lured the victim with deceitful intention and raped her on the promise of marriage. Whenever the victim asked him about marriage, he avoided the topic,” Medipally police said.

The accused pastor of a Gospel Church also conducts religious programmes for two television channels airing evangelical programmes. He first got married to one Sandhya in 2010 and the couple were blessed with a girl child. Due to ill health Sandhya passed away and again in 2015, he got married to Rebecca (36). “She was blessed with a boy and was living with her parents due to marital disputes,” police said.

Meanwhile, the victim got acquainted with the accused at the church and soon he started a new church at a rented place in Uppal, where the victim worked as a telecaller. “Venkateshwarlu used to take the woman to various places in the guise of prayers and in January last, he took her to an isolated place near Shamshabad where he forced himself on her for the first time,” police said.

On September 3, Venkateshwarlu’s second wife Rebecca lodged a complaint against the former stating that he was harassing her, both physically and mentally, for additional dowry. Based on her complaint, a case was registered and the next day, another woman, approached police stating that the pastor raped her repeatedly on the promise of marriage.

He was arrested and remanded to judicial custody.

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