A second-year Bachelor of Arts student (18) studying in Chandigarh was pushed into the Bhakra Canal here by allegedly her boyfriend (24) and his accomplices who had driven her down from her college. Police are tightlipped over reports that suggest gangrape before murder.
Another girl with the victim saved herself by fleeing and around 6.30pm on Tuesday, approached the police who, busy making security arrangements for the next-day visit of the chief minister to the medical college here, were slow to respond. Even the victim’s father, who got here around Tuesday midnight after a call from the survivor, received no help from the law.
The police registered the first-information report (FIR) only on Wednesday; that too when the media started making enquiries. Eight divers are looking for the body. Sure that the student is dead; the police have booked the three accused under Sections 302 (murder), 201 (destroying evidence), and 34 (common intent in crime) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC).
The victim was from Tapa town in Barnala district. Her father, a Markfed employee, had moved the family to Zirakpur for the sake of her better education. Reports suggest that her boyfriend, Gurvinder Sharma of Gharali village in Bathinda district, was with friends Sukhmani and Rohit (both in their early 20s) when they picked up the victim from outside her college and her friend from her paying-guest accommodation here. The survivor also is from Tapa.
The canal into which the victim was thrown is by Passiana Chowk here. The accused are enrolled for IELTS (International English Language Testing System) training. “In his statement recorded for the FIR, the victim’s father has not made any allegation of rape or molestation,” said senior superintendent of police Hardial Singh Mann, adding that only the interrogation of the accused, besides autopsy once the body was fished, could lead to more clues.
The Barnala police have arrested one of the accused and a police team from here has gone over to fetch him.