The Gujarat High Court on Monday issued notice to the state government on a petition moved by the Naliya gangrape victim, who has sought further investigation into her complaint by CID (Crime), CBI or by a Special Investigation Team (SIT), led by a woman police officer. She has alleged that the accused in the case are running “organised sex racket by trapping and blackmailing young girls, mostly coming from poor families.” Following a brief hearing, Justice J B Pardiwala issued notice and sought case details from the government on the petition moved by the victim through her lawyer Mehul H Rathod. The court has posted the matter for hearing on March 31. In the petition, the victim has alleged that the local police, instead of investigating the case, are shielding the accused and not investigating the sex racket that has “30 to 35 young girls, who are also victims…”
In the petition, the victim has alleged that Kutch district police “adopted a lukewarm approach and indirectly granted time to the accused persons for destroying the important pieces of evidence like video clips, mobile phones etc…” She has alleged that the local police leaked her application, which she had filed before the FIR was lodged.
According to the petitioner, she had named another person, Atul Thakkar of Bhuj, and a woman identified as Bhabhi, “who are also running this racket from Lohana Bhavan.” However, she has alleged that Thakkar’s name was not mentioned in the FIR. The petition also mentions the special identity card issued to her allegedly by Kutch BJP for “district training classes”. The victim wrote that she had given this card to the police which has not been probed by the police. The BJP maintains that such cards were forged in the name of the party against which a complaint has been lodged with the district police.
The victim has also alleged that the Naliya police station officials treated her “like a criminal” and called her to the police station to record her statements for four days (January 22 to January 25). Except on the last day, there was no woman police officer present, she has alleged, adding that she was asked odd and indecent questions.
Last month, the Kutch police lodged two separate FIRs against the victim, following local court orders, after litigations by her former husband Kalpesh Momaya. The first FIR was lodged against the victim for criminal intimidation.
The second FIR is based on her former husband’s complaint of criminal breach of trust, cheating and extortion. He has alleged that his former wife extorted Rs 25,000 from him for divorce.
In the petition, however, the victim has mentioned that her marriage with Momaya lasted for only two days . She has alleged that the accused “prompted” Momaya to lodge FIR against her to “malign” her publicly.
The case is being probed by the Special Investigation Team formed by Kutch West Superintendent of Police since January 29. It is led by Local Crime Branch (LCB) police inspector Janak Aal and has five other members . Following the political controversy, the state CID (crime), Gandhinagar, also formed a committee to monitor the probe.