Agitated parents, intellectuals and students staged a sit-in at the city magistrate’s office on Friday over the alleged failure of the Noida Police to track down and rescue Kashish Rawat, the missing five-year-old girl, for the last one year.
On May 12, 2016, Kashish Rawat, then four-years-old, went missing from outside her residence in H block of Sector 22. Fearing she had been abducted , her parents lodged a missing complaint at the Sector 24 police station.
However, the police was unable to trace her whereabouts in the first few days after the complaint was filed.
Since the five-year-old went missing, the city reported a series of similar abduction cases. Alarmed, the parents took to the streets and hit out at the police over its inaction.
Jolted by the protests, the police formed a special team and rescued two of the abducted kids. However, even a year since Kashish went missing while out playing, the police still haven’t been able to make much headway in the case.
On Friday morning, around 100 people representing the city’s civil society assembled at the city magistrate’s office and registered their protest against police’s inaction in the case.
“We have been looking for our daughter for the last one year , but slowly but surely, we are beginning to lose hope. What is even more disappointing in this case is the response of the police. We demand the police speed up their investigation into the case and bring my daughter back home safe,” Sanjay Rawat, Kashish’s father, said.
“We have knocked on every possible door since the day our daughter went missing, but no action has been taken. It’s been a year since Kashish went missing and they still have no clue on where she might be. What have they been doing all this time? I just want my daughter back,” said Rita Rawat, mother of the five-year-old.
The civil society also submitted a memorandum to the city magistrate demanding speedy investigation into the case. The memorandum was addressed to UP chief minister Yogi Adityanath, requesting his intervention in the case.
“Whatever hopes we have of finding our daughter is diminishing by the day. Despite having definite leads in the case, the police have chosen to ignore them. Every day that goes by and the girl isn’t found makes her chances of recovery even more slim. We request CM Yogi Adityanath to intervene in this case and provide justice to the family,” Anil Panth, spokesperson, Uttarakhand Ekta Manch, said.
School students, too, came out in support to the girl’s parents.
“What happened to Kashish could happen to anyone of us. The police must take urgent steps to ensure safety of children,” said Pankaj Kumar, a student of Dharam Public School at Sector 22.
City magistrate Ramanuj Singh said that he has heard the plea of the aggrieved parents and has sent his recommendation seeking immediate action.
“I have written a letter to the superintendent of police seeking a status report on the progress of investigation into this case. In the memorandum that the civil society members sent to CM Yogi through me, I have asked the police to explain the delay in investigation,” Singh said.
Vinay Prakash, station house officer of Sector 24 police station, said, “Noida police did the initial investigation before the case was transferred to the Anti Human Trafficking Unit of the district.”
Superintendent of Police (crime) Ramyash Singh was not available for comments.