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Bhilai gangrape: ‘If I die, nobody will call me a prostitute anymore’

In her suicide note, the girl says her lawyer, Kalpana Deshmukh, told her there was little hope of her getting justice, and that she would be made to run around in court.

Written by Dipankar Ghose | Bhilai | Updated: February 4, 2016 2:37 am
nagpur rape, bhilai gangrape, bhilai rape, bhilai news, chhattisgarh news, chhattisgarh rape, chhattisgarh gangrape, india news The room where the Bhilai ‘rape victim’ killed herself

“If I die, nobody will call me a prostitute anymore.” In a suicide note speaking of loss of faith in the judicial process, the “rape victim” who killed herself in Bhilai on Thursday left behind this wish.

The 21-year-old was found hanging from a ceiling fan when police arrived to issue court summons for the next hearing on February 2. “Whenever I go to court on the date I am called, the judge is not present in court,” she wrote at another place.

The letter, in Hindi, was discovered by police inside a notebook, written by her after nearly a year of the case being tried in court.

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For six months, she had kept the alleged assault by a doctor and two police constables hidden from her family, worried about their “izzat (honour)”. Her father retired as the guard of an engineering college in Nagpur, and she was the fourth of seven children. The family lives in a two-room house.

She had gone to Lal Bahadur Shastri Hospital in Bhilai in June 2014 for some treatment on her face when she was “raped”, allegedly first by the doctor and then the two constables posted there.

“The doctor, Gautam Pandit, told her she had jaundice and kept her at the hospital for three days. He drugged her, and with constables Saurabh Bhakta and Chandra Prakash Pandey, raped her. Then for over six months, they threatened her, saying they had made a video, and even took money from her on two occasions,” says her brother.

In January 2015 she finally told her family, and the three were arrested within a day.

According to the brother, police were reluctant to file an FIR. “They hit her at the time saying she was lying, but eventually the three were arrested. Since then, both my sister and I would get threatening calls, asking us to compromise or withdraw the case. They even came to our house. Sometimes she even got calls from within the jail premises. There was constant harassment. After the matter came to light, people would call her names. It was just too much for her to handle,” he says.

The father claims prosecution lawyers threatened that they would drag her family’s name into the matter. “She never reported this because she told her lawyer everything. We fear her lawyer too did not want to fight for her, and instead told her to give up the case.”

In her suicide note, the girl says her lawyer, Kalpana Deshmukh, told her there was little hope of her getting justice, and that she would be made to run around in court. All of Thursday, Deshmukh remained unavailable, with her phone switched off.

In her suicide letter, the girl goes on to seek the forgiveness of her parents. “Please mummy, papa forgive me. Nor will I get justice anymore, nor will I be able to move forward in life.”

The father claims that while they had attended all the five hearings that been held so far, it was also shown in court records that they had missed them.

Still, the family never expected the girl to take this extreme step. “She was studying B.Sc, and just three days ago, told my mother she wanted to finish it, take a law degree and become a judge, because she didn’t want what was happening to her to occur to someone else,” says the brother.

Police have taken phones of both him and the victim to examine the charges of threats. “We will reach a conclusion in the matter. If any further complaint is received, action will be taken on that as well. Everyone that has been named will be questioned, including the lawyers,” Rajesh Agarwal, ASP, Bhilai, said.

Under attack from the Congress, Chief Minister Raman Singh told reporters on Friday that it was likely “something emotional was going on in the victim’s mind”. “All the accused have been arrested and the case is going on in court,” he said.

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  1. A
    Jan 31, 2016 at 3:31 am
    Really alarming. Loss of faith in justice will never help country to progress. It is high time that we understand this. Unfortunately yes somehow we all are responsible for loss of a life. As media is used to conduct trials without authority, this is the right time they continue until culprits are punished.
    1. S
      Son of
      Jan 31, 2016 at 5:56 am
      Fourth child among seven her parents had!! Really Indians breed faster than rats and then complain about not able to raise them properly. Why do you breed like pests!!
      1. K
        Jan 31, 2016 at 9:08 pm
        Why is thus author using so many "quotation marks"? I don't "get it".
        1. L
          Logical Indian
          Jan 30, 2016 at 11:40 pm
          indeed a sad story that is a display of how insensitive our society has become to the plight of rape victimsstead of providing a speedy and effective justice ,she was made to do the rounds of courts.Needless to say besides an effective judiciary mechanism we need a change in social mindset.Sad to see how the country's moral values have degenerated to such an extent
          1. D
            Jan 31, 2016 at 9:14 am
            Must be rapist shangi (chaddi)
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