Two days after a Special Investigation Team was formed to conduct investigations into allegations of rape of a 26-year-old woman at Tikri border, who subsequently died of Covid on April 30, police in Haryana Tuesday issued notices to the six people accused of the crime as well as Swaraj India national president Yogendra Yadav, asking them to join the probe.
“We have issued notices to all six people in the FIR as well as to Yogendra Yadav, since he was in touch with the victim during her last days, asking them to join the investigation. One of the two women accused in the case has come today and is being questioned; further proceedings in her context will depend on what emerges during questioning. The others have not yet responded,” said Pawan Kumar, DSP (Bahadurgarh), who is heading the SIT.
Of the six, two men identified as Anil Malik and Anup Singh are the key accused. Police said raids are being conducted to nab them. “We have formed three teams,” Kumar said.
The FIR was registered on Saturday after the woman’s father submitted a complaint. In it, he stated that his daughter had come to Tikri to join the farmers’ protest with members of the Kisan Social Army she met in Bengal. He said she had been harassed on the train, where one of the key accused grabbed her hand and forcefully kissed her. At Tikri, she was staying in the tent of the Kisan Social Army and was allegedly raped by Malik and Singh, he submitted.
On April 21, the woman began exhibiting Covid symptoms. On April 25, she was admitted to a private hospital, where she died on April 30. Her father said she told him about the alleged rape a day earlier.
At a press conference Monday, he said he had named only two people but the case had been registered against six, including two women who were in fact helping him. Police officials, however, said all six were named in the complaint.
At a press conference on Monday, leaders from the Samyukta Kisan Morcha had claimed they were unaware of the sexual assault the woman had faced until after her death when her father alerted them.
Yadav said on Monday that his wife had spoken to the woman in Bangla, where she had indicated that something was wrong, but it was not clear. The next day, the two accused were taking her away from Tikri border, until Yadav was alerted to this by her father and he intervened. The two then brought her back, and she was eventually admitted to a hospital.
“Because of her medical condition at that time, our first priority was to get her medical attention. We thought that once she was better, she could tell us what exactly happened and then the required action could be taken,” he said.