A full 24 hours after Kolkata Police's detective department (DD) launched a full-scale investigation into a woman's allegation that she was raped by three youths in a car as she was about to leave a nightclub on Park Street on the night of February 5, the sleuths are now concentrating on verifying the somewhat contradictory statements given by the girl.
For one, the main accused named by the woman, Luvi Gidwani, has been traced to Toronto, Canada, where he has been studying since January. On Wednesday, DD sleuths spoke to him over phone and he has faxed Lalbazar his immigration details from his passport that clearly shows Luvi left Kolkata on January 1 and has not visited India since. On Thursday, police commissioner RK Pachnanda told reporters, “We have all the travel details of Luvi Gidwani that shows he was in Canada on the day the alleged rape took place. HT has learnt that when confronted with this fact, the woman reportedly told her interroga tors that she “could be wrong in identifying Luvi Gidwani“.
As for the other two boys named by the woman, Sarafat Ali and Azhar Ali, they came to Lalbazar on Wednesday afternoon after hearing that they had been named in the crime. The cops clarified that the two boys have not been arrested.
Both Sarafat and Azhar reportedly told the police that they were nowhere near Park Street when the alleged rape was committed. Both were at home, participating in a religious ceremony. Senior police officials who refused to be named told HT that the duo had submitted a CD of the fes tivities at their homes.
The police have also verified the mobile call records of Sarafat and Azhar. Though the details are yet to be known, HT has learnt that cell tower records showed that, indeed, they were not on Park Street that night.
There is yet another startling revelation. HT has learnt from hospital records that the woman, accompanied by her aunt, first went to NRS Hospital around 1.30am on February 9. She was examined at the emergency ward.
And this is what the attending doctor wrote: “Assaulted by five unknown persons with fists and blows. She was conscious...She had lacerated wounds on her shoulder, left knee joint and right ear.“ The doctor also wrote the names of two persons ­ Sarafat Ali and Zehnam Khan ­ who assaulted her.
What is surprising is that she never mentioned to the doctor that it was not just an ordinary assault on her, that she was raped. Only 21 hours later, when she walked into the Park Street police station, she mentioned in her complaint that she had been raped. When questioned about this, the woman told HT, “I didn't want to go to hospital, so I didn't mention rape. My friends and family later convinced me to tell the cops the full story.“
Forensic docs rap cops for delaying victim's test
Forensic state medicine (FSM) experts of Calcutta Medical College (CMC) have not found any evidences substantiating the allegation of rape of an Anglo-Indian woman around the Park Street area on February 5.
An official of the Park Street police station received the report of the medical examination of the woman from the FSM department of the CMC on Thursday afternoon.
“We have handed over the forensic test report to police. Police have also taken the vaginal swab slide of the victim from us. We have not found any evidence that confirms the allegation of rape. Our experts have found some injuries on her knee joints, ear and several other areas but not on her private parts,“ Dr Lakshmikanta Ghosh, head of the FSM department at CMC, said.
“The garments she was wearing on the day were not brought for test. The victim was brought to the department on February 14, nine days after the incident. The non-produc tion of garments and delay in producing the victim makes it difficult to find out the exact evidences probing any rape case,“ Ghosh added.
The blame game between the Kolkata Police and CMC has already been started. FSM doctors have raised the question on the role of police of Park Street police station.
They have alleged that police officials had unnecessarily delayed the examination of the woman by the FSM department, at a time when Damayanti Sen, joint commissioner of police (crime), said that the forensic doctors had deferred the date of medical test to February 14 showing non-availability of doctors. “We have no dearth of doctors in the forensic department.
We have 15 doctors including eight teachers and seven postgraduate trainee doctors in the FSM department. There is no question of non-availability of doctors delaying the medical test,“ professor Utpal Dutta, principal CMC, said.
Ghosh alleged that the police should have brought the woman to the CMC soon after the complaint was lodged. “An officer of the Park Street police station came to our department on February 11 showing us a court order for the forensic test of the woman. But the police did not produce the woman. We requested the officer to bring her on that day. But he did not respond to that. Instead he asked for another date on February 14 to produce her for the test.“