A 21-year-old unemployed youth was put behind bars on Sunday for attempting to rape a minor girl in Rabodi. And this time, it wasn’t the police, but an alert citizen, 25-year-old advocate Tahera Qureshi, who along with other local residents nabbed the accused.
The accused Jitendra Gandre befriended 10-year-old victim while she was buying stationery at a local store in her locality on February 5. The girl fell prey to Gandre’s sweet-talks and he even handed over Rs10 note to lure her. He then took her to a nearby building’s terrace and realising that the terrace was locked; he forced himself on her near the staircase itself.
After this, Gandre asked the girl to meet him again at Konkani Masjid at 7.15pm, next day. The accused asked the girl to bring her cousin sister along this time. He even promised to give her more money, if she did as he had asked her to.
Shell-shocked girl somehow reached home and confided in her cousin, who then informed her (cousin’s) parents. When her aunt came to know what had happened, she narrated the incident to Qureshi.
Qureshi decided to lay a trap to nab the accused. Qureshi assured the girl that she would accompany her when she goes to meet Gandre next day.
“I told the victim that I would come with her. But I asked her to walk a few steps ahead of me and I followed her. When she came near the mosque, I saw a man smiling at her. The victim turned around and yelled that he was the man. He started running away. I chased him and I screamed for help. Local residents came forward and helped me nab him,” Qureshi said.
Qureshi and others then took Gandre to the police station and handed him over to the police. The police registered a case of attempt to rape against him, following which Gandre was remanded to judicial custody.
“Gandre, a Thane resident, is unemployed and is a school drop-out. He tried to have intercourse with her and we have registered a case of attempt to rape against him. He has been remanded in judicial custody,” said police inspector BA Darade.