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Counter-terror college men held for ‘raping’ minors

Lekhraj and Suresh Kumar,who work as cooks at CTWJC,were arrested after the parents of one of the victims lodged a complaint against them

Tension gripped Kanker in Bastar Saturday when residents marched toward Chhattisgarh Counter-Terrorism and Jungle Warfare College (CTJWC) after two men stationed there were arrested for allegedly raping two minor girls.

Lekhraj and Suresh Kumar,who work as cooks at CTWJC,were arrested on Friday after the parents of one of the victims lodged a complaint against them. The college has suspended them.

According to the complaint,the two rode to Pathari village on a motorcycle without a number plate Thursday night. On finding the victims alone,they took them to a nearby forest and raped them.

They abandoned the motorcycle and fled from the spot after noticing some people passing through the area. The victims are high school students.

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As news about the incident spread,residents,including a large number of women,marched to CTJWC to protest,prompting the authorities to deploy police to avoid any violence. The villagers alleged that the securitymen and trainees at the college routinely tease women,particularly when they to nearby forests to attend nature’s call.

Officials said CTJWC Director Brigadier (Rtd) B K Ponwar was talking to the agitated villagers to pacify them,and had promised stern action against the accused.

“Both the accused are cooks and are not part of the security personnel who are to be imparted training for guerrilla warfare. We have handed them to the police so that strict action is taken against them as per the law,” Ponwar said.

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He also promised action the trainees who are found of teasing women and said they would not be allowed to go to the forests to attend nature’s call and the college would construct toilets on the campus.

CTJWC was set up to train security personnel to fight Naxalites in dense forests. Over the last few years,CTJWC has emerged as one of the premier jungle warfare training centres in the country,the officials said.

First published on: 01-05-2011 at 00:05 IST
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