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A 70-year-old owner of a private school in Pithoragarh district has been arrested for allegedly raping minor girl students residing in his school hostel.
Chandra Singh Karki was arrested from his house in Nainital on Thursday after three girls, aged between 9-13 years, staying in the hostel of his school at Berinag charged him with raping them for a long time, in charge of anti-human trafficking cell of Nainital police DL Verma said on Friday.
The matter came to light when the victims shared their ordeal with their senior hostel inmates who prepared a video in support of the charges and submitted it to the police.
Examination of the video and recording of the statements of the victims led to the arrest of Karki, Verma said.
According to the statements of victims recorded separately by police, about six other girl students were earlier sexually assaulted by the school owner, forcing them to quit the school, the official said.
Karki, who claims to have been associated with the Uttarakhand statehood movement and is a retired ?government college lecturer, was today produced in the court of Gangolihat Judicial Magistrate A K Srivastava who sent him to 14 days' judicial custody.
"The accused has been sent to Pithoragah judicial lock up for 14 days custody by the Judicial magistrate at Gangolihat," Harish Punetha, the advocate pleading for the victims said.
After detailed inquiry into the matter by anti human trafficking cell of the police at Haldwani, the accused has been booked under section 376 (Rape) of IPC and Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act.