A 30-year-old woman doctor sustained burn injuries on her face and neck after two bikers threw an acid-like chemical substance at her in Rajouri Garden in west Delhi on Tuesday morning.
The woman, Dr Amrita Kaur was on her way to the ESI Hospital on her Scooty at about 9.25am when two bikers hurled the chemical substance at her in the busy Rajouri Garden market.
The bikers snatched her handbag and fled towards the main market. Locals rushed to her rescue and informed the police.
Caught on camera: Acid thrown on woman doctor
The police said the chemical substance was not concentrated acid but a corrosive liquid of similar nature. Kaur was rushed to the nearby local hospital from where she was referred to the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS). Doctors said she had suffered burn injuries on her face and right part of the neck and the right eye. She is being treated at AIIMS.
Eyewitnesses told police that the bikers were on a black motorcycle. The rider had covered his face with a handkerchief while the one riding pillion had covered his face with the hood of his jacket and had worn dark sunglasses. The police are scanning CCTV footage in the market area to identify them.
Ranjit Kaur, an eyewitness, told HT: "The woman sustained injuries on her face and neck and her eyes swelled up immediately."
The police registered a case at the Rajouri Garden police station. Officials said it appeared the bikers were following her for almost a kilometre."We have registered a case under sections of robbery and acid attack. Investigation is on," said Pushpendra Kumar, DCP (West).
"She was brought to us in time but still she needs proper treatment as her right eye and right half of the face has received chemical burns," said a doctor.
The bikers may have robbed the woman to mislead the investigators after police officials claimed that the modus operandi has raised several questions.
Police sources said the case could be that of a jilted lover trying to avenge an unsuccessful relationship. "The victim had her wedding coming up next month. It is possible that an ex-boyfriend committed the crime. To mislead the police, they snatched her handbag," said a police official.
According to the police and doctors at AIIMS, the substance hurled was not pure acid. It was a similar chemical of low density and did not cause severe damage.
CCTV footage from the area is being scrutinised and the police have already procured important leads into the case. "We are investigating the case and several teams have been set up to probe the matter. The accused will be arrested soon. We are looking into the place where the substance was procured," said special CP (law and order) Deepak Mishra.
While a forensic report is still awaited to ascertain the origin of the substance, senior officials in the department hinted that local chemical labs in the area were under the scanner.Alok Dixit, founder of the NGO Stop Acid Attacks, told HT, "Police records shows that every day at least two acid attacks happen in the country. Despite several appeals to the government, nothing is being done to control the sale of acid. It is shocking that anyone can just walk up to a store and buy concentrated acid and no questions will be asked. Unless laws are made stricter, more women will succumb to such attacks."