The 19-year-old Dalit woman killed in Hathras was allegedly raped by four men after she rebuffed one of them, Sandeep, and this “change in their relationship” “aggravated his feelings” and “frustrated him”, the CBI has said in its chargesheet filed in the case.
The chargesheet also has a scathing indictment of the Uttar Pradesh Police, stating that despite the woman naming three people when her statement was recorded on September 19, the name of only one was mentioned in the statement. It further states that “though victim alleged molestation, her medical examination regarding sexual assault was not conducted”.
The CBI chargesheet against the four upper-caste men has been filed in a court in Hathras under IPC Sections 376 (rape), 376 (D) (gangrape), 302 (murder) and relevant Sections of the SC/ST Act, against Sandeep (20), his uncle Ravi (35) and their friends Ramu (26) and Luv Kush (23). The woman was assaulted allegedly by the four on September 14, and died a fortnight later at Safdarjung Hospital in Delhi. The four accused have been in judicial custody since their arrest in September.
According to the chargesheet, the woman and Sandeep lived nearby and “he developed acquaintance with the victim two/three years back which gradually turned into love affair”. It states that “it also came on record” that they “used to meet in isolated places”, and that “these facts are supported by many villagers”.
The chargesheet further states that Sandeep had three phone numbers and several calls were made from those to a phone number belonging to the victim’s family. “However, all family members affirmed during their examination that they neither called nor spoke to Sandeep over the phone.”
“Investigation further revealed that when family member of the victim came to know about the mobile calls exchanged between victim and Sandeep, they had a wordy quarrel with Sandeep’s family in front of his house. This incident was witnessed by several villagers… Subsequently, the victim’s father also made oral complaint to (the pradhan’s son) about the phone calls made by the accused to the victim, as confirmed by witnesses…” the chargesheet states.
When contacted, the victim’s brother told The Indian Express, “There was absolutely no acquaintance between my sister and the accused, Sandeep. He had obtained our number from somewhere and would make prank calls, pretending to be someone else. A couple of missed calls as well. Besides that, no calls had been exchanged. The entire village is against us and I believe they would say anything to falsify the crime that took place.”
According to the chargesheet, the “analysis of call detail records of accused and victim and mobile calls pattern from October 2019 to March 2020 indicates that there were short duration (signal) calls from the side of victim to Sandeep, which were followed by long duration calls from accused Sandeep to victim’s family number. This established that the relationship/affair between victim and accused Sandeep was in good form till March 2020”.
It adds: “Thereafter, no calls were made from (victim’s family number) to either of Sandeep’s number, which shows that their relation/affair was disturbed.”
The chargesheet says the relationship soured further when their family members got to know and that after March 20, Sandeep tried to contact the victim from various numbers of his friends and relatives.
The chargesheet states that the examination of a person revealed that Sandeep had asked him to call the victim’s family number and connect him on a conference call. “During examination, (the person) also stated that the victim was avoiding accused Sandeep and his mobile calls for some time. Because of her changed behaviour, Sandeep was in frustration,” the chargesheet states, adding that he suspected she was having “an affair” with someone. “This change in their relationship aggravated the feelings of accused Sandeep,” it states.
On the allegations against the accused, the chargesheet states: “During her examination on September 22, the victim categorically stated that she was gangraped by the four accused persons; she also named them in her dying declaration… It establishes that on September 14, the victim was gangraped at the bajra field when she was alone. Investigation also revealed that all four accused were present in the village or nearby place, which corroborates the allegation of the victim.”
The chargesheet also states that a medical examination of the victim was carried out by a doctor from the Department of Forensic Medicine at AMU on September 22 and the final opinion stated that “there are no signs of vaginal/anal intercourse. There are evidences of physical assault (injuries over the neck and the back)”.
After the CBI took over, a Multi-Institutional Medical Board (MIMB) was constituted by the Forensic Department at AIIMS, which stated, “The possibility of sexual assault can’t be ruled out as minimal bleeding was detected microscopically after one week of assault as alleged in the case. However, pattern of injuries sustained during an incident of sexual violence may show considerable variation. This may range from complete absence of injuries (more frequently) to grievous injuries (very rare). In this case, since there was a delay in reporting/documentation/forensic examination for sexual assault, these factors could be responsible for absence of significantly visible signs of genital injury.”