Investigations in the rape-bid-on board-train by an IAS officer is gradually coming out of the mist with co-passengers’ statements describing the officer’s activities on the fateful night ‘suspicious’.
The Railway Protection Force (RPF) has recorded the statements to be presented in the court which is scheduled to hear the case on Wednesday. IAS officer Shashi Bhushan Lal Susheel was released on interim bail on October 3.
“We have recorded the statements of some co-passengers who called the IAS activities suspicious all through the night.
A woman passenger stated that the accused woke up at least three times during the night hours and every time she saw him standing near the girl’s berth,” said a GRP man heading the probe.
He said the woman stated that she was a little afraid following, which she pulled her berth’s curtains open.
He also dismissed as baseless the controversy generated on adding Section 376/511 (rape bid) of the IPC later to the FIR. He said the GRP control room logbook at Moradabad, where the case was first reported, clearly mentions that the accused had “touched private parts of the girl,” which corroborates what the use of the sections.
He said the FIR was initially registered under lower IPC sections of 354 for molestation and 294 for obscenity.
“We have procured the logbook’s certified copy and would present it in the court. The logbook’s entry clearly proves that the police action to add IPC sections of 376/511 in the FIR”.
The investigation officer (IO) Girja Shankar Tripathi confirmed that statements of some copassengers have been recorded but denied revealing further details about it.
The IAS’ counsel Anil Pratap Singh had stated earlier in the court that the charge of outraging the girl’s modesty is false. He had questioned how could a person attempt to outrage modesty of a girl in the presence of so many other co-passengers.
He had stated that there is a possibility of attempt to molest, which is bailable offence.
The court granted interim bail to the IAS considering the defence counsel’s arguments when the prosecution counsel demanded some time to prepare for the argument with the defence.