Mumbai Police arrested two men earlier this month for allegedly sexually assaulting and raping a 17-year-old girl who had gone missing from her home in May. The girl was traced in September and later revealed that she was raped by two men who took her to their homes under the pretext of offering help.
The police said the girl fled from her house on May 4 after she had a fight with her parents the night before. The girl was slapped by both her parents after which she left her house. “When she did not return, a case of kidnapping was registered with the local police station and a team was set up to locate the girl,” said an officer.
On September 3, the teenager was spotted and later taken to the local police station. The police said she was in shock and did not say much. “We found the girl in a traumatised state. We took her to a children’s home and with the help of an NGO, we recorded her statement. Following that we learnt the girl had been raped on September 1,” said a police officer. Initially, the girl said that she wanted to relieve herself and sought the help of one Sunil Goswami.
“We have learnt that she approached Goswami for help and he took her to his house where he allegedly forced himself on the minor,” said an officer. On September 4, a police team was sent to Goswami’s house and he was picked up from there, the police said. On September 10, the girl revealed that another man had raped her for around two months.
“We got a call from an NGO and were told that the girl has named one Nilesh Deshmukh who allegedly raped her in his house. We arrested him on September 11,” said an officer. The girl said that after leaving her house on May 4, she went to a railway station where she met Deshmukh, a rickshaw driver, who offered her shelter and took her to his house. “The accused allegedly raped her several times for around two months. She fled from his house in July,” said an officer.
The senior inspector of the local police station said: “We have arrested two men and the girl is in a children’s home receiving treatment.”
The police said her statement would be recorded by a magistrate as per Section 164 of the Code of Criminal Procedure (CrPC). The accused persons have been booked under sections 363 (kidnapping) and 376 (rape) of the Indian Penal Code, along with sections 4 and 8 under the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act, 2012. On Tuesday, both the accused were produced in court and remanded in judicial custody.
According to the National Crime Records Bureau data, a total of 88,008 cases of kidnapping and abduction were reported in the country in 2016. Among the states, Maharashtra ranked second, with 9,333 case (10 per cent), after Uttar Pradesh. The NCRB data shows that 36,022 cases were registered under the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act in 2016. Among the states, Maharashtra again ranked second with 4,815 cases.