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A year on, Maharashtra Income Tax official arrested for raping domestic help

Police remained tightlipped on the delay behind arresting Veerabhadram Vislavath despite the case being filed under the stringent Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act.

mumbai Updated: Sep 07, 2018 01:37 IST
Farhan Shaikh
Farhan Shaikh
Hindustan Times, Mumbai
Income Tax,POCSO,Deputy commissioner
A poster held up as part of an anti-rape protest at Hauz Khas village in New Delhi. (AFP File)

More than a year after the incident, a deputy commissioner of the income tax department, Veerabhadram Vislavath, was on Thursday arrested for allegedly raping his 12-year-old house help.

While Dnyaneshwar Chavan, deputy commissioner of police, zone 2, confirmed the arrest, the police remained tightlipped on what caused the delay, despite the case being filed under the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act. The law mandates serious action in such cases.

Vislavath was transferred to Mumbai from Uttar Pradesh in 2015, and lived with his wife and a daughter. In her complaint to the police, the survivor’s mother said her two daughters came to Mumbai in 2016. They lived at Vislavath’s home “as they were attached to his infant daughter”.

“Vislavath started to molest the girl in the absence of his wife. When she protested, he boasted about his job and money, saying he would buy her jewellery and fancy clothes. He claimed he had property in Hyderabad and lured her saying he would give her ₹10,000 when she returns home,” the woman said in her statement.

On February 10 last year, Vislavath allegedly raped the minor, after sending her sister to work in the kitchen, when his wife was at the neighbour’s house. “When the girl protested and tried to scream, he slapped her and tried to strangle her with her dupatta,” the FIR stated.

The IRS officer allegedly threatened to “destroy her life” by uploading on the internet the pictures he took while she was bathing and also reportedly threatened to behead her.

Within a few months, the girls returned to their native town in Uttar Pradesh, and narrated the incident to their mother. Fearing the officer’s wrath, the family did not report the incident to the police. However, soon, they started to get threat calls, allegedly at the behest of Vislavath, after which they approached Atruli police station in Aligarh.

With no action from the Uttar Pradesh police, the woman approached the Aligarh court. She alleged a man showed up at their house and told them that Vislavath had called the survivor back to Mumbai. In another instance, on May 26, she claimed a man called them up threatening to kill them. “The court told us the incident did not happen in its jurisdiction, after which we filed a complaint of rape and criminal intimidation,” the woman said, while filing a complaint at Gamdevi police station on August 23.

First Published: Sep 07, 2018 01:37 IST