Mobile phone records and statements from people confirming their alibi have temporarily put off the arrest of two persons accused of pushing a woman and her daughters out of a train to their deaths in Sitapur, the Government Railway Police (GRP) said on Saturday.
The accused — the deceased woman’s cousin Iqbal and his friend Izhaar — were brought to Sitapur earlier in the day but the GRP, which had booked them in the case, asked them to remain in the district till the investigation is over.
Meanwhile, on Saturday, a police team led by an inspector reached Katra area in Jammu, where the deceased woman’s husband used to work as a mason.
Iddu Ansari (45) is reported to have accompanied his wife and five daughters on the Amritsar-Saharsa Jan Seva Express, from where they were allegedly thrown off.
The bodies of Afreen (40) and her daughter Munni (6) were found close to the railway tracks in Sitapur and Lakhimpur Sekhri on Tuesday. Three other minors, were found injured at different places along the track. One child is yet to be traced.
One of the girls, Anbul (7), had first said that Ansari threw her off before changing her statement to name Iqbal and Izhaar. The GRP had booked the two based on her statement.
“The woman’s cousin Iqbal and his friend Izhaar were brought to Sitapur today by the police team that had visited their native village in Bihar. The accused, during questioning, had said that they did not leave the village with Iddu Ansari. Their claim was verified with the location of their cellphones. Villagers too confirmed their presence in the village,” said Saumitra Yadav, SP (GRP) Lucknow.
“Based on the investigation so far, we did not arrest the two. But, they have not been given a clean chit. Both have been asked to stay in Sitapur till the investigation reaches a conclusion,” the SP added. Yadav said that the girls’ grandmother and other relatives had reached Sitapur to care for the injured.