THE DECOMPOSED body of Gulshan, a suspect in the brutal gangrape and murder of a 15-year-old girl in Jind, was recovered Wednesday from a canal, about 120 km upstream from where the girl was found.
Both Dalits from a village in Haryana’s Kurukshetra district, Gulshan (18) and the girl were reported missing since January 9.
Since the girl’s body — mutilated with multiple injuries — was found January 13, police have searched for Gulshan, who they believed abducted the girl on January 9. While Gulshan’s father and two brothers were detained for questioning, his mother Radha asserted Wednesday that Gulshan and the girl had been attacked and killed by “others”.
The girl’s body was recovered from near Budha Khera village in Jind district. After the post-mortem examination reportedly revealed the brutal manner in which she was allegedly gangraped, police added IPC sections of gangrape in the same FIR.
Both, the boy and girl, had gone missing after attending their tuition classes in the village on January 9 following which the girl’s parents went to the police.
Kurukshetra police told The Indian Express they were investigating the murders from “all possible” angles and working on “multiple theories”.
“Gulshan was the prime suspect, but now his body has also been recovered from a canal. The post mortem report, prima-facie indicates drowning was the cause of Gulshan’s death. There are no external injury marks on his body. The detailed report is yet awaited,” said Haryana Director General of Police, BS Sandhu.
He added that the girl’s body was also recovered from the same canal, downstream around 120-130 km from a distributary on January 13. “We are exploring all angles in the case. All those detained for questioning have been released. We believe some family members of the deceased are in hiding. We are working hard on this case and shall soon solve the mystery,” Sandhu said.
Locals said the duo had last been seen on January 9. “They were spotted together in an under-construction building near Gulshan’s house on January 9. She reprimanded both of them. The same evening, they disappeared. The aunt has also not been seen in the village since the girl’s body was found”, said one of the villagers.
According to police, Gulshan and the girl were in constant touch over the last few months and had last spoken with each other on January 9, the same evening they went missing.
The Station House Officer of Jhansa police station was also placed under suspension. “Our teams are investigating both the deaths from all possible angles. We are working on various theories”, said Abhishek Garg, Superintendent of Police, Kurukshetra.
As reports of Gulshan’s death surfaced, tension prevailed in Budha Khera village where police rushed forces.
Gulshan’s mother Radha demanded her two other sons be released. “Police had picked up my husband Jaswinder and sons Gaurav and Sagar on January 13 after the girl’s body was recovered. They were detained since then. Today, police took Gaurav to the spot where an unidentified body was recovered. Gaurav identified Gulshan from the tattoo on his arm,” she said.
She added that her husband had been released, but had no information about her two sons.
Radha added, “After the girl was found dead, police and the entire village painted us as culprits. We couldn’t show our faces in public. Now, my son has also been found dead. I suspect that somebody caught both children and then killed them. Rather than harassing my husband and sons, police should find out who killed both the children”.
Police also detained a few men from the same village for questioning four days ago. “We have detained a few men who were in close contact with Gulshan. We are questioning a number of people, but no arrests have been made yet,” said a senior police officer.
Police took Gulshan’s body to BPS Government Medical College in Sonepat where the post-mortem examination was conducted by a board of doctors. Gulshan’s father Jaswinder and relatives brought his body home in the village late evening.
The girl was a class 10 student and her tutor told The Indian Express that she and Gulshan were his students and attended classes every evening. “Though Gulshan was not that regular, the girl used to come every evening. In fact, both stopped coming on January 7. The girl’s father came to me on January 9 night asking about his daughter,” he said.
According to the tutor, he had told the girl’s father that she had not attended classes for two days. “Then, the girl’s family went to Gulshan’s home and found him missing too. They approached the police and lodged a formal complaint”, the tutor said.
Reacting to the spurt in cases of rapes and subsequent murders of women across Haryana, the opposition has slammed the Manohar Lal Khattar-led BJP government in the state and demanded his resignation.
Congress Communications in-charge, Randeep Singh Surjewala, said, “Under the BJP government, Haryana regrettably has become crime hub of the country.”
Khattar Wednesday condemned the incidents of violence against women and called such incidents as “unfortunate”. In a statement released this evening, Khattar said that he assured people that the government would take all measures to arrest the culprits.