Axe could fall on three more police officials for their infamous role, which led to the suicide by Kanchan Bala Jha on August 23.
IG Shobha Ohatker, conducting an inquiry into the circumstances leading to the death of the girl, a student of SR Goenka College, Sitamarhi, is reported to have cross examined more than 50 persons and collected evidence to present to the government.
To recall, Kanchan Bala, said to be a brilliant student of mathematics, was tortured to such an unbearable extent by some local rowdy elements, that she was forced to complain to the police, which took no action. Frustrated, she ended her life by hanging herself from the fan, but not without leaving a note behind, which pulled the veil off the whole episode. She named the Sitamarhi SP also as stonewalling the case. The SP has since been transferred.
Officials in Sitamarhi told this writer, that the inquiry spanned four days, in course of which, more than 50 persons were interrogated for details. They included many police ranks.
Sources added, that those debriefed also included Kanchan Bala's friends, family members and co-villagers, besides immediate neighbours. What has caught the public imagination is that Kanchan Bala had a social side too and tutored several poor children free of cost in mathematics and hence was held very high in public esteem.
What has riveted the attention during the inquiry is a dispute over the actual handwriting on the suicide note. The local police have been trying to prove, that the victim did not write a note and the one made available was written by another hand. While the original had some pages indicting the police missing, the IG is said to have collected Kanchan Bala's college notebooks to tally the writing. The samples would now be matched by handwriting experts with the state forensic laboratory in Patna.
Local officials believe, that an impression has gained ground that whatever has been found could indict the police administration, mainly on grounds of inactivity.
Meanwhile, a section of Sitamarhi residents blocked the main thoroughfares of the town on Thursday to protest against the transfer of Sitamarhi SP. More than 400 people disrupted vehicular traffic and burnt tyres on NH 77 and some state highway during the daylong agitation.
The angry locals formed a platform - Nav Jagriti Manch - and came out onto the streets. They also forced the traders to shut their business establishments.