The Mullanpur Dakha police have allegedly been pressuring the family of a 10-year-old rape victim to accept Rs 50,000 and 'settle' the matter with the accused, nearly six months after the crime. Threats have been issued to the effect that the accused was influential and could harm other family members.
In fact, the police have failed to even create the case file properly. The medical examination of the girl was conducted on October 11 and that too on the court's orders. The report is still awaited.
However, instead of succumbing to the pressure, the victim's family approached deputy inspector general MF Faruqui and pleaded for action. The DIG had marked an inquiry to SSP Jagraon, asking him to look into the allegations and take appropriate action.
The family also approached to the court against police inaction. The girl also recorded her statement before the court, which sent it to Mullanpur Dakha police station and directed the officials to add other sections in the charge sheet and add names of the main accused's accomplices and others using their influence to protect the accused.
However, reluctant to take action against the accused, the police have failed to comply with any of the court's directions.
A Class VII student was allegedly abducted by Bittu and Raj Kumar of Mullanpur Dakha on May 5 this year. The father of the girl, a labourer, had approached the police for the immediate registration of a case. However, it took the police five days to register a case.
The victim has stated that she was kidnapped in a car belonging to a councilor and son of former president of municipal council of Mullanpur Dakha. She was taken to a factory and raped. Then, she was given eatables laced with sedatives and when she regained conscious, she found herself at the New Delhi Railway Station.
Later passing through a number of hands, she was handed over to a family in Meerut.
"The family used me as domestic help for at least five months. I pleaded several times to be sent to my parents, but I was ignored. At last, I managed to escape from the house and landed up at a hospital," rued the victim.
"A former BSP councilor from Meerut had admitted to the hospital, after he saw me wandering the streets. He informed my parents on the phone. Finally, my father brought me back on October 6."
The underprivileged family cannot afford legal help, so advocate Iqbal Singh has come forward to help the family on humanitarian grounds.
The advocate said that he had contacted the police and demanded the reasons for not arresting the accused, even though more than five months have passed after the registration of a case. He was shocked when the investigation officer of the case told him that an inquiry was on and till it is completed, the police top brass had stayed the arrest of the accused.
Singh added that only the sessions court was empowered to grant pre-arrest bail under section 438 (dection for grant of bail to person apprehending arrest) of the CrPC. The police do not have the powers to grant a stay arrest.
Senior Superintendent of police, Ludhiana (rural) Ashish Choudhary, said: "The DIG had marked an inquiry and had asked me to verify all the facts and allegations. I have called the family to discuss the matter. Those found guilty will not be spared, irrespective of the position he holds."