Assam police on Thursday arrested the man who allegedly raped and murdered two women in toilets of separate trains in the last two days. Police said the accused has confessed to his crimes. “The prime accused has been arrested and he has confessed to raping and murdering both the victims. The mobile phone of one victim and the earrings and anklets of the other victim were recovered from his bag,” Additional Director General of Police R P Meena, who is supervising the investigation into the two incidents, told The Indian Express. Police also said they suspect that accomplice of the accused is on the run.
The body of a 21-year-old student of Assam Agricultural University was found in the toilet of a local inter-city train on Tuesday morning at Simaluguri station in Sivasagar district, while that of a 48-year-old woman was found in the toilet of Avadh-Assam Express on Wednesday afternoon at Mariani station in Jorhat district.
In both cases, traditional towels — called “gamusa” in Assam — were found around the victim’s neck. Prima facie probe and marks on the victims’ neck had led the police to suspect that they were strangulated.
The recovery of the two bodies triggered outrage across the state. As a precautionary measure, the zonal railway has asked the Railway Protection Force (RPF) to request women passengers to not board Seating-cum-Luggage Rake (SLR) coaches. The prime accused was nabbed in Tinsukia, according to a senior officer of RPF. B S Meena, a divisional security commissioner of the RPF, described the accused as a “hardcore criminal” and said that he was involved in numerous smaller incidences of pickpocketing and stealing on trains.
“He was nabbed after we analysed a series of CCTV footage and concluded that his movement was suspicious. After nabbing him, we found belongings of the two women in his bag,” said the RPF officer. He added that if the accused was not nabbed, it was possible that he would have committed “more such crimes”. Assam police had earlier added charges under Section 376 of the IPC, which deals with punishment for rape, to the cases.