Anita Rathod, resident of Vatsalatai Nagar slum in Nehru Nagar, mother of a 10-year-old girl has been spending sleepless nights after three girls of her daughter's age were raped and killed in the area in the last four months.
The 32-year-old homemaker drops her daughter at school and waits outside until her class gets over.
As the police have failed to trace the serial killer, mothers and parents like Rathod in Nehru Nagar continue to live in perpetual fear and worry after the body of the nine-year-old girl in the neighbourhood, who was raped and murdered, was discovered.
“The police have become mute spectators as rapists and murderers haunt the streets here. If the police do not act soon I fear the killer will continue to cause mayhem,” said Sayeed Hussain Ansari (38), a social worker and Nehru Nagar resident.
Saturday’s incident has been a wake up call for the police. Officers are visiting every school in Kurla and the surrounding areas to educate the children about the precautions they should take so that they do not become the next victim.
“We are teaching children to beware of strangers who offer them chocolates and money. I tell the children if they come across such a person who tells them to come with him, they should scream and call for help. Children should avoid talking to strangers,” said Assistant Commissioner of Police Jalinder Khandagle.
“Children should always be chaperoned whenever they are out of their houses.”
Meanwhile, after the nine-year-old girl’s body was identified, her family has been in a state of shock.
Due to its decomposed state the family could not identify the body. Her father, Khursheed Shaikh, identified her from the clothes she was wearing on the day she went missing.
“Despite several measures taken by the police and the Mohalla committee members, the accused is still roaming free. The police should hand over the case to the CID so that the accused is nailed,” said her uncle Ismayeel Shaikh.