On the day a 16-year-old girl was allegedly kidnapped and gangraped by two constables on the premises of Musajhag Police Station in Badaun, her 60-year-old mother had pleaded with villagers to help her. The victim had gone to attend nature’s call when she was allegedly kidnapped by constables Avnish Yadav and Veerpal Yadav. As her mother waited outside their home, she saw a car zoom by.
“It was around 8 pm. I went to look for her but couldn’t find her. I knew she had been kidnapped in the car. I went to villagers and told the village pradhan but nothing happened. For four hours, I begged for help,” said the mother, who was alone at home at the time.
“My daughter returned after midnight and told me she had been dropped near the village by the constables who kidnapped and raped her,” she said.
The following day, family members went to meet Badaun SP (City) Lallan Singh. “I submitted my complaint and waited… It was only after some mediapersons arrived that the police got the FIR registered,” claimed the victim’s uncle.
It was only the next day, on January 2, when Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav gave directions to act against constables that the victim was called for a medical examination, which confirmed sexual assault.
Since then, police have recovered hair strands, a hair clip and jewellery suspected to belong to the girl from Veerpal’s room on Musajhag police station campus. The girl has identified this room as the same one where the rape took place, police said.
While Avnish was arrested from Bareilly on Monday, Veerpal is still absconding. Two of his relatives employed in the police department have been suspended for “collusion”. The sub-inspector who was the night officer at Musajhag police station on that day and the SHO have also been suspended.
“The special task force is working to arrest Veerpal. We are collecting as much evidence as possible. The constables were notorious but the SHO and Circle Officer failed to report their activities; that is why action was taken against them,” said Vijay Singh Meena, IG, Bareilly Zone.
The girl studied till Class VII but dropped out two years ago because of financial constraints, her mother said. She lived in a two-room house — which has no toilet — with her parents and a younger brother.
The mother said she usually used to accompany her daughter when she went to the fields to relieve herself after dark.
Villagers and the victim’s mother said the two accused were notorious in the village and would sit at the culvert outside the victim’s house, often getting drunk.
“They beat up villagers, snatched their belongings. Just a month ago, Veerpal had beaten up a vegetable seller. Nobody dared to lodge a complaint against them. They had terrorised us,” said Subodh Pathak, a resident.
“Veerpal was earlier posted at neighbouring Dataganj police station where he assaulted a complainant in a rape case to get him to withdraw his complaint. The case was related to the rape of a three-year-old Dalit girl. Veerpal was later transferred to Musajhag police station,” said V S Sirohi, the station officer at Dataganj police station.
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