The body of a girl, found in a canal on K N Katju Marg on Tuesday night, has been identified as that of a 10-year-old who went missing from Outer Delhi’s Narela area earlier that day. Police said they took four days to trace the girl’s family members, who identified the body on Saturday morning.
However, the delay in handing over the body enraged the family and they staged a protest outside Narela police station on Saturday afternoon. Alleging inaction by police, hundreds of residents also joined the girl’s family.
The mob damaged the police post and torched three motorbikes parked in the vicinity. Some of the protesters also threw stones and damaged several cars in the area. Two police teams had to be deployed in the area to disperse the crowd.
Joint Commissioner of Police (Northern range) S Krisnia said, “The protesters had blocked the road for hours and then they turned violent setting one PCR motorcycle and a couple of other private vehicles on fire, besides damaging the police post. We had to use mild force to disperse the crowd. An FIR under sections of rioting and damage to property has been registered though no one has been detained so far. We are investigating the case.”
“They kept the body for three days without informing us. They were trying to suppress the matter. Now they claim that the death was caused due to drowning when it is a clear that it is a case of murder. We want a thorough investigation in the matter and and we also demand the suspension of errant officials who carried out such a shoddy investigation,” a protester said.
Refuting the allegations, police said even though they had recovered the body on Tuesday night, it was unidentified and they were trying to trace the family, which, police claimed, is a lengthy process. Police said all police stations in the vicinity were informed and asked for records of missing person cases registered in their respective areas. This helped them trace the family of the girl. Police said.
A senior police officer said, “A case of kidnapping was registered on April 21 by the family. But the body was recovered from K N Katju Marg, which falls under a separate jurisdiction. The body was kept in the mortuary and we took time to identify it —- we had to call families of all those children who gone missing recently. After the body was identified by the child’s family, it was sent for a postmortem examination and handed over to the family.”