Six months after a pregnant woman was burnt in mysterious circumstances at JP Nagar in Bhopal, the police finally took cognizance of the incident and registered a case on Saturday night. On Sunday, police added charges under section 307 of IPC, too.
The victim, Rachna, 29, who comes from a poor family, gave birth to a baby girl in the intervening period. She is in an extremely critical condition even now - reportedly in coma - at her parents house in neighbouring Vidisha district. She sustained burns on October 4 last year.
Her kin allege she was set afire by her in-laws about six months back at JP Nagar under Gautam Nagar police station in Bhopal. Rachna was married to one Vinod in 2005. Due to marital dispute, she stayed at her parents' house in Vidisha for several years and came back to Bhopal only last year.
There she began working at a hospital. Her kin allege that she was burnt. However, the exact circumstances surrounding the incident aren't known yet.
"When we went to Gautam Nagar police station to lodge the FIR after the incident, the then-town inspector asked us to come later for FIR and focus on her treatment instead. The new TI said since the incident had occurred long ago there could be no FIR now," said Jairam Kori, Rachna’s uncle, talking to the journalists.
"Her husband Vinod didn't take any interest in her treatment. We took her to Vidisha but her condition deteriorated. She, however, gave birth to a child. Now Rachna is in coma and needs urgent medical attention," said Kori.
He said it was nothing less than a miracle that Rachna gave birth to a child in such a critical condition.
On Saturday again, Kori along with his family members and Rachna's four-month-old child Tejal came to Bhopal and reached the police control room. Senior police officials gave him a patient hearing.
Later, two police personnel were sent to Vidisha to record the statement of the victim and her kin. It was after the statements that a dowry harassment case was lodged at the night against Rachna’s husband Vinod and his mother.
On the delay in lodging of the FIR, superintendent of police (SP) North Arvind Saxena said an inquiry would be conducted in this regard.