“Had the professor not reported the case, the girl’s suffering would not have come to the notice of the police and the accused stepfather [Andrew Fernandes] would have been roaming free,” said KMM Prasanna, deputy commissioner of police (zone 9).
On Friday evening, when the 21-year-old told her professor that her stepfather had repeatedly raped her for six years, she called a friend in the police force for advice.
“The officer directed the professor to me. When she called me I asked her to get the victim to my office,” said Prasanna.
When the victim narrated her ordeal, the police were stunned.
“We called the victim’s mother who was equally shocked to know about her daughter’s plight at the hands of her second husband,” said Prasanna. “A case of rape was lodged based on the statements of the victim and her professor.”
On Saturday, Fernandes, a driver by profession, was arrested on rape charge.
“Fernandes has confessed to raping his stepdaughter three times in the past six years,” added Prasanna.
The victim’s mother told the police that she was “completely unaware” as her daughter never even hinted that she was being sexually abused. “I am so embarrassed, I feel like committing suicide,” she told the police.
On whether the victim would undergo counselling, Prasanna said: “The incident is still fresh in the victim’s mind though the accused stopped the abuse three years ago. She wants to continue her studies and if she wants would be given counselling too.”