Two of the three ‘most vicious’ perpetrators of the brutal physical and sexual assault meted out to the 23-year-old physiotherapist aboard a moving bus last week were finally nabbed on Friday.
According to senior police officers, the first apprehension was that of a 17-year-old acquaintance of main accused Ram Singh, 33, from east Delhi's Anand Vihar bus terminal on Friday afternoon. Sources, however, claimed that he had been detained at Bhawanipur in Rajasthan.
In the evening, the last accused, Akshay Thakur, was arrested from Tundava district in Bihar's Aurangabad. Between the two of them, police claimed, burnt remains of the victim's missing mobile phone, ATM cards and, ironically, some remnants of the clothes which she was stripped of during the horrendous act, have been recovered.
Sources said the juvenile, who bore no identification documents and was subjected to a medical examination to ascertain his age and was known to investigators as 'Raju' prior to his apprehension, was among the three of the four who had most demonically assaulted the victim during her 45-minute-long ordeal on the fateful evening.
"Egged on by Singh, who claims he got incensed when he was bitten by the girl when he was assaulting her friend and started beating her mercilessly — especially on her face and private parts with his shoe, the juvenile was the third one to sexually assault her after him and Akshay Thakur," said an officer.
The juvenile, who told police that he had run away from his Bhawanipur residence at the age of 14 and hasn't once visited his family ever since, had first met Ram Singh while working at Dinesh Yadav's bus stand in Noida.
He is believed to have told police he had accompanied Singh many a times as a replacement conductor-cum-cleaner subsequently with the geographical proximity of their villages in Rajasthan having brought them together.
"His last meeting with Singh had been six months ago — when they ran into each other at the bus pit after work. On Sunday, they had met by chance and Singh had invited him home so that he could be part of the booze party which he was going to throw," said the officer.
The juvenile, sources said they had been told by Singh, was not only the first person to have assaulted the victim's 28-year-old friend when he asked Ram Singh to mind his own business, he was also among the first of the six men on the bus to have put his hands on the victim.
"Singh claims that even after the victim had passed out after the ordeal, the juvenile, who had still retained some energy, kept brutalising her in ways which cannot be disclosed,” the officer added refusing to share details.