A Punjab police head constable, 44, was arrested from his residence in Sector 66 here on Saturday for allegedly raping his 13-year-old daughter repeatedly over the past year. The matter came to light when the girl escaped after the most recent instance of rape by the father on Friday night.
It is also learnt that she had told her maternal aunt about the exploitation four days ago. Yet, she continued to live in the house and suffered again on Friday at the hands of her father, a driver for a public relations officer at the police headquarters and a native of Hoshiarpur. He had recently remarried as the girl's mother - his first wife - had died in a road accident in 2011. The stepmother had arranged a meeting between the girl and her aunt at which she had shared her trauma.
On Friday night, as his wife was away for the past three days, he came back home drunk after duty and took his daughter into a separate room where he repeatedly raped her the whole night. When she tried to resist, he assaulted her with a cricket bat, it is alleged. He tied a piece of cloth on her mouth to suppress her screams.
In the early hours of Saturday, she managed to escape from her house and reached her neighbours, who informed her relatives. She narrated the incident to her maternal aunt again, over the phone, and she informed a Panchkula NGO - Sarthak - that called the police and rescued the girl. The father was arrested from the house.
Talking to HT, the victim's aunt said she had told her how her father set an alarm for 2am and asked her to come to a room without making a noise every night. NGO Sarthak's president, Nipun Kapoor said she called the cops after receiving a call from the girl's kin.
The police registered a case under section 376 (rape) and 506 (criminal intimidation) of the Indian Penal Code against the father, and also imposed section 4 of the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act, 2012.
By Saturday evening, medical examination had confirmed rape, and the victim's statement was also recorded before a magistrate.