After making a person spend nearly 16 months in jail for rape, Chandigarh Police has decided to withdraw the charge against him. So, it has filed an application with the UT Home department in this regard.
A local resident, Wasim Malik (27), is currently out on bail in a case registered in December 2016, accusing him of raping a woman employee of a call centre. However, swabs taken from the victim’s clothes did not match the DNA samples of Malik. All this while, police also could not recover the autorickshaw from Malik in which the call-centre employee was allegedly raped.
Malik, an auto driver by profession, came out of jail on April 9, this year, on a surety bond of Rs 50,000.
Rape charges were framed against Malik by the Additional District Judge and trial had commenced. But, on March 13, 2018, Chandigarh Police arrested another auto driver, Mohammad Irfan, in another rape case. His accomplice, Kamal Hassan, also Irfan’s cousin, was arrested a day later. Although they were arrested for the case wherein they allegedly raped a Dehradun woman in November 2017, they confessed to having raped another woman in December 2016 as well during interrogation.
Police took Irfan’s DNA samples and sent those for matching the swabs taken from the clothes of the call centre employee, which finally matched. The DNA samples of Kamal Hassan were also sent for matching, the report of which is awaited. Both Irfan and Kamal were also arrested in the case of raping the call centre employee. The two accused were also identified by the call centre employee. Her statement was again recorded before the magistrate under Section 164 CrPC and she identified both Irfan and Kamal.
“In her previous statement in court, though the victim had identified Wasim Malik, she later retracted during cross-examination and said that she took Malik’s name because she was in trauma,” Chandigarh SSP Nilambri Vijay Jagdale told Chandigarh Newsline.
As the legal proceedings against Malik had reached the stage of trial, Chandigarh Police cannot file any application to discharge him from the case. Speaking to Chandigarh Newsline, the SSP said, “Application to withdraw the prosecution has been moved by the Chandigarh Police, which has been forwarded to the UT Home department for approval. After the approval is received, the application will be filed in the district court for further proceedings.”
The SSP added, “The accused Malik was earlier arrested after the victim had identified him in the TIP (Test Identification Parade) in front of the magistrate in 2016. Since the victim had identified the accused in TIP, Chandigarh Police arrested him and filed a chargesheet against him. But now, after the victim has identified the other two accused, Irfan Mohammad and
Kamal Hassan in court and have also stated the same in her Section 164 CrPC statement, saying that these two had committed the crime on her, we have thus initiated the proceedings of withdrawing the case against Wasim Malik.”