The 17-year-old girl who was raped by Andheri-based astrologer Hasmukh Rathod (55), with help from her mother Anjana, has recounted her ordeal in a statement to the police. In a chilling account, she said her father too wanted to rape her. It was only when her elder sister — who had been raped by their father and Rathod for several years — found it difficult to protect her any longer, that they decided to break their silence.
Hindustan Times gained access to the police statement. Here is an excerpt:
November 1, 2008. My life turned upside down.
I was at home with Mom. It was a Saturday. My elder sister and father were out. I was expecting a friend in the afternoon.
Mom told me that she would be going to Hasmukh uncle’s residence in Andheri to deliver some khakra. She asked me to accompany her. I refused saying that my friend would be coming. Mom kept insisting I accompany her. I finally agreed.
Hasmukh uncle was alone at home. As soon as we entered his flat, he bolted the door from inside. Asking us to sit, he went inside to fetch water for us.
Mom told me that I should have a physical relationship with Hasmukh uncle. I was shocked. I didn’t know how to react. I told her it was impossible. She started blackmailing me emotionally. She said it was necessary for the well-being of our family and if I didn’t cooperate, I would be responsible for my family’s peril. I refused again.
She then called up Papa. She complained to him about my refusal to give myself to Hasmukh uncle. She gave the phone to me. I was shocked to hear Papa asking me to do what Mom said. He too started blackmailing me emotionally. I was totally confused by then. Hasmukh uncle had, by then, joined Mom in coaxing me. I knew him as an astrologer and a tantrik and he kept insisting that my cooperation was imperative for some rituals.
He asked Mom and me to undress. Mom complied immediately but I refused. Then both of them began to forcibly undress me. Hasmukh uncle had taken off his clothes by then. He led us to the small mandir in a corner of the kitchen. He blessed us after touching the deity’s feet. He then took us to a bed in the adjacent hall. Mom asked me to stand near the bed while she had sex with him. Then he turned to me. Mom held me down throughout the act.
Hasmukh uncle later told me that if I told anyone about it, the entire family would be ruined. We returned home late in the afternoon. The next morning I told my elder sister everything. She too told me about the ordeal she had been undergoing for the past several years. She asked me to keep quiet, saying that a confrontation at that point would raise a storm in the house and hamper my studies since my Class 10 exams were ahead.
Meanwhile, Papa told my sister that he wanted to have sex with me. She fought with him and started protecting me ever since. After some time, Papa started pressurising her again. It was then that we decided to confide in my uncle (maternal), grandmother and aunt. They took us to the police…