Three men and a Rajasthan woman were arrested Saturday over the gangrape of a 19-year-old female model in a moving SUV in Kochi, Kerala, late on Thursday night.
The Kochi police identified the arrested accused as Nithin, Sudhi, Vivek — all from Kodungallur in Thrissur — and Dimple Lamba, who hails from Rajasthan and works in the modelling field. They were booked on charges of rape, abduction and criminal conspiracy.
According to police, the model, a native of Kasaragod, went to a bar hotel in the city for a dance party on Thursday night at the invitation of Lamba. The three men joined them later at the bar. After a few drinks, the woman was taken to the men’s SUV. They allegedly raped her while the vehicle kept moving in the city. Later she was dropped on the premises of her residence.
City police commissioner C H Nagaraju told reporters that police were investigating whether the drink offered to the woman had been laced with any drug. There would be a scientific investigation into this aspect, he said.
The model told police she did not know the three men who joined the party. She told reporters that she suspected her drink had been laced with drugs. “The men took me to the car. I could not react and was brutally assaulted in the moving vehicle,’’ she said.
State Women’s Commission chairperson P Sathidevi, a CPM leader, said police should keep an eye on the DJ parties in Kochi. “Women’s safety is under threat in the DJ parties. Police should strengthen the surveillance in the city,’’ she said.