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HindustanTimes Tue,29 Jul 2014

Danish tourist raped: A new band of faceless, nameless criminals

HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times  New Delhi, January 15, 2014
First Published: 22:54 IST(15/1/2014) | Last Updated: 08:58 IST(16/1/2014)

She was bound, robbed and sexually assaulted in turns in a district that is home to a homogeneous population of around four million people, borders the VIP district of New Delhi and lies in the vicinity of two major transit points.

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The sexual assault of a Danish tourist in the heart of the city has once again exposed the tall claims of Delhi Police that they have taken ample steps to ensure the safety of foreigners.

According to the police, their deployment is maximum during evening hours in areas like Connaught Place, Paharganj and Janpath that are frequented by foreign tourists. However, this apparently was not the case on Monday.

The fact that the Danish woman was overpowered, robbed and subsequently gang-raped by eight men at a public place, close to the crowded New Delhi railway station, tells a different story.

What is more shocking in the case is the fact that the crime spot is barely 400 metres from the nearest police booth, located at the outer circle of the capital's business district of Connaught Place.

The involvement of homeless people in the gang-rape of the Danish woman has raised the issue of removing and rehabilitating homeless people who are often found wandering on the streets in areas of central Delhi, which are frequently visited by foreigners.

"In fact, the reason why only two of the eight men involved in the rape could be nabbed was because criminals of this nature - vagabonds and homeless - are faceless, nameless and hence more lethal," claimed a senior police officer.

Sources said the common name that most suspects shared was proving to be a major hassle in the ongoing investigation; so much so that the police are now understood to be mulling a drive to strengthen its dossier system on homeless criminals.

A majority of vagabonds found living near Hanuman Temple in Connaught Place or near the New Delhi railway station - both are near the Connaught Place police station - are drug addicts. They allegedly involve themselves in petty crimes like robbery and thefts for money to buy smacks and drugs.

While police officers claim that they have no other alternative but to book such small-time criminals for committing petty thefts, officials in Delhi government claim that despite their best possible efforts, these people refuse to stay in shelters made for homeless people.


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