Days after she was allegedly attacked by four men and pushed off a train between Yeshwanthpur and Mysore,19-year-old Asha Rani lies curled up on a bed in a corner of the casualty ward at Mandyas government hospital. A railway policewoman sits guard beside her partly to protect her and partly to prevent her from running away.
Since her encounter with the men on the train Asha has not had a single friend,family or distant relative inquire about her condition. Asha has a broken thumb and bruises from her fall from the train and has been cleared for discharge. She has been unwilling to disclose her address. I will go to my friends house in Mysore, she said,refusing to identify the friend. Its only after the police said they would send her to a remand home that she revealed the name of her village T Narsipura. She said that she had refused to give her address to the police as it may bring disrepute to her family. Now the state womens commission will decide where she will go after the hospital discharges her.
Asha was allegedly attacked by Akbar,Imran,Rafeeq and Zuban all residents of Mysore and currently in judicial custody on a train on July 24.
According to her,she is an orphan. I was brought up in a village in Dharwad. I studied and lived at Navanagar,Hubli,with an uncle and aunt. I dont have parents or siblings. I now live with a friend in Mysore, she said.
Strangely,verifications of addresses provided by Asha for family at Hubli and friends in Mysore have drawn blanks during investigation. Asha had told the police that she worked as tailor at Induraa garments factory near Bangalore. However,police inquiries at the factory have revealed that she worked there for 15 days in January.
A number of vendors who ply their wares in the trains between Mysore and Bangalore have told the police that Asha was a regular on the trains and that she had been seen in the company of different men.
On the basis of recent mobile phone call records of a number that Asha disclosed,the police have contacted four numbers that she recently communicated with. Sources said the four men who owned the numbers had all stated that they had met Asha on trains. According to Asha,she fell off the train on July 24 after she refused the advances of four men and was attacked by them.