Five months after the body of a 15-year-old girl was found in a sugarcane field in Meerut, her 18-year-old friend has been arrested, along with four others, for her rape and murder, police said.
“During questioning, the accused, Sumit, claimed that he was in a relationship with the girl and she had been pressuring him to marry her. He claimed when he turned down her request, she threatened to approach police and file a complaint against him,” said Vaibhav Krishna, senior superintendent of police, Ghaziabad.
On December 26, Sumit called the girl — the daughter of a priest in Ghaziabad — and took her to his house, police said. “He allegedly raped her that night and the next morning. He then called his friend Arif, who dropped the girl to the accused Rajeev’s house in Vijay Nagar,” Krishna said.
According to her family, on the afternoon of December 26, the 15-year-old girl had gone to wash her hands at a tap near her home when she went missing. An FIR under IPC sections 363 and 366 — relating to abduction — had been registered against unknown persons on the basis of a complaint from her father.
Till January 9, the girl was confined inside the Vijay Nagar house in Ghaziabad, police said. “On the evening of January 9, she was taken to Meerut by Sumit and his associates. The accused told us that once they reached near Agheda village, she was strangulated with a dupatta. To ascertain that she was dead, they allegedly drove the car on her neck and dumped her body in a sugarcane field,” Krishna said.
On January 12, her body was found around 15 km from her residence. In the aftermath of the incident, the Modi Nagar DSP had been transferred, and the local police station in-charge suspended for dereliction of duty, police said. A day before she went missing, the girl had been reprimanded by her mother for talking on a mobile phone. “The mother had asked her where she got the mobile phone and the girl told her that a friend had given it to her. Her mother threw the phone into the pot,” said a neighbour.