Rahul Mahajan's showy wedding on reality television, watched by millions across the country and abroad, seems headed for a split with second wife Dimpy Ganguly alleging that her husband, son of late BJP leader Pramod Mahajan, had punched, kicked and dragged her by the hair.
Dimpy married Rahul - who gained national notoriety after his father's death because of his brushes with the law - on the Imagine TV reality show 'Rahul Dulhaniya Le Jayega' in March this year amid much hoopla and media attention.
The 22-year-old Kolkata-based model told NDTV channel Friday: 'Rahul beat me up early Thursday morning after waking me up to know the contents of a message that had beeped on my phone. When I asked him to go back to sleep, he flew into a rage and began hitting me. He punched, kicked and dragged me by the hair.'
On Friday, Dimpy told reporters in Mumbai that she needs time to recover and wants to be left alone.
Talking to reporters briefly, Ganguly said: 'Rahul and I just had a conversation and he sincerely regrets what happened.
'We are both very upset and I am extremely hurt. I need time to think about this and recover from whatever has happened. Till that time, I want to be left alone,' she added.
Ganguly reportedly had stayed with Poonam Mahajan, Rahul's sister, after alleged physical abuse by her husband. She has now returned to Rahul's residence.
Ganguly had left Rahul's place after the spat at around 4 a.m. Thursday.
This is the second time Rahul has been accused of domestic violence. Earlier, his first wife and childhood friend Shweta Singh had accused him of physically abusing her. They separated in 2008. In 2006, Rahul was arrested on charges of drug abuse.
In New Delhi, Women and Child Development Minister Krishna Tirath responded by saying a panel would investigate the allegations if Dimpy complained.
'I will ask the National Commission for Women (NCW) to look into the matter if she (Dimpy) lodges a formal complaint with us. Domestic violence in no way is acceptable,' Tirath told reporters here.
In an interview to a Mumbai Mirror, Dimpy alleged that Rahul beat her up regularly and also pointed a gun to her head in one of their fights.
Friends, relatives and close associates said the couple along with family members were trying to resolve the issue.
'I have known Rahul to be a sober and thoughtful individual. There might have been some difference of opinion between the couple, but I am sure it can be resolved through a mature discussion,' said Prakash Mahajan, Rahul's uncle.
Rahul remained unavailable for his reaction despite repeated attempts.