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A day after an FIR was lodged in the case of a 19-year-old girl who succumbed to injuries after allegedly being thrown out of a moving tempo for resisting molestation on Friday night, her family claimed the charges slapped on the accused were “not too strong” and declared they will protest outside Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath’s residence on Monday. The girl’s mother demanded that charges of attempt to rape and murder also be invoked. The FIR has been lodged under sections 354 (assault or criminal force to woman with intent to outrage her modesty), 304 (culpable homicide not amounting to murder) along with 342 (wrongful confinement) of the IPC.
Refuting claims that the police were going easy on the accused, Vivek Tripathi, ASP, Aliganj, said the FIR was registered on the basis of the police complaint.
“In the FIR application, the victim’s father wrote ‘molestation’ and not attempt to rape. Also, the situation shows that the accused were trying to loot as the stretch between the Dubagga tempo stand, where the victim boarded, and the water tank, is just 8-10 minutes long,” said Tripathi.
“Also, nearly 200 mts ahead of the water tank, the tempo dropped off two other female passengers, and only after that did they try snatching. No one attempts to rape in that time,” he added. The ASP further claimed the accused’s intention was “not to kill the girl”. “They threw her out of the moving vehicle because they wanted the people chasing them to stop, and not because they wanted her dead,” he said.
According to the alleged victim’s elder sister, they had told police that the accused attempted to rape her as her clothes had been pulled down and torn, and there were marks on her body.
She added that all her sister had with her was an old phone and not more than Rs 100 in cash. “It was definitely an attempt to rape. What would anyone try to snatch when she had nothing valuable with her?” she added. The deceased’s father said he is illiterate and that the complaint was written by police, after which he added his thumb impression.
On allegations that the Police Response Vehicle (PRV) took too much time to respond, the official spokesperson of the police said that the vehicle had reached the site of the incident “within five minutes of getting the call”.
“The call came around 21:44.. PRV reached the spot at 21:49 and when the PRV found no one there, they again called the number from which they had got the call at around 21:56 and were told that the victim has been admitted at the Career Medical Institute. After that they were informed about the direction in which the tempo had gone. The PRV went in that direction to find that the tempo fallen into a ditch,” said a statement released by Lucknow Police.
Of the four accused, two named Sarvesh and Pappu have been arrested. The other two, Sonu and Anna, are absconding.
“Tomorrow we will go on a candlelight march and hunger strike in front of the CM’s residence demanding stronger charges against the accused and proper justice and compensation for the girl’s family,” said a neighbour, who claimed to have chased the accused and called the police.