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Friday, Sep 20, 2019

75-year-old, who went to attend devotional soiree, raped in Bengal ashram

The woman was raped at the Puraghat ashram in Nabadwip town. Police arrested the culprit, Gopal Maharaj, who used to work there as cook.

kolkata Updated: Oct 28, 2017 17:13 IST
Halim Mondal
Halim Mondal
Hindustan Times
The victim had to be admitted to hospital  after the crime.
The victim had to be admitted to hospital after the crime. (Daljeet Kaur Sandhu/HT)

A 75-year-old woman was raped inside an ashram at Nabadwip in West Bengal last week when she went there to attend a bhajan session. Police arrested the culprit, Gopal Maharaj, who used to work as cook at the ashram.

Though the incident in Nadia district took place on October 21, the woman lodged the complaint on October 27.

“The crime was committed on the morning of October 21. We arrested Gopal Maharaj on Friday after receiving the complaint. He was produced in court on Saturday,” said Subir Pal, inspector-in-charge of Nabadwip police station.

In March 2015, the country was shocked when a 71-year-old missionary of a church at Ranaghat in the same district was raped by a gang of criminals who struck at the dead of night.

Read: CID files chargesheet against 5 accused in Ranaghat case

Located on the western bank of the Hooghly river and about 100 km from Kolkata, Nabadwip owes its place in history to the Bhatkti movement. The Vaishnava saint Chaitanya (1486-1533) preached his philosophy of universal love at Nabadwip. He was also born here. Nabadwip town has many temples, ashrams and akharas where many disciples even stay permanently.

The woman, who was raped at the Puraghat ashram, is a resident of Srinagar colony in the Pratapnagar area of Nabadwip town.

Read: Bengal nun rape: Ludhiana cops detain 4 suspected Bangladeshis

She was a regular at the ashram, where she was associated with listening to and singing bhajans. She was also connected to puja and daily rituals.

According to the 2015 National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) data, West Bengal recorded one of the highest number of crimes against women. It contributed 10.1% of the total crimes against women in the country.

In the complaint lodged at Nabadwip police station on Friday, the victim alleged that the cook forced himself on her when he found her alone.

She was admitted to Nabadwip State General hospital in critical condition.

First Published: Oct 28, 2017 17:13 IST