UDUPI: Like in the Delhi gang rape victim Nirbhaya case, the state government is mulling to fast track the case, where a 22-year-old medical student was abducted and gang-raped by three miscreants at Manipal on Thursday night.
Home minister KJ George said: “We will approach the State Chief Justice with a request to fast track the case. Informing media at the office of the Superintendent of Police at Udupi on Sunday, he said that the accused when they are brought to book will be tried under new anti-rape bill which provides for life term and even death sentence for rape convicts. As per the amended law, a rape convict can be sentenced to rigorous imprisonment for a term not less than 20 years, which may extend to remainder of the convict’s natural life. It also provides for the death sentence to repeat offenders. ”
George, who met the victim and her mother said:”She is a brave girl. She resisted her attackers and in the process fell down from the auto rickshaw and hurt herself. We have to blame ourselves for the incident (for not being able to protect her). ”
Pressure has been piling up from the Kerala government too since the girl hails from that state.
“Kerala chief minister Oommen Chandy, home minister Thiruvanchoor Radhakrishnan have spoken to me. Shashi Tharoor has spoken to CM Siddaramaiah regarding the case. We are making all out efforts to nab the perpetrators of this heinous act,” the minister said.
“Indicating strong action, the home minister said police have been told to work without prejudice or under pressure. We have given them a free hand,” George asserted.
The home minister after seeking inputs from top officials said: The case is going on a slow pace since police do have not complete details from the victim. The police are proceeding ahead with bare minimum information as of now. Inspector General of Police (Western Range) Pratap Reddy refused to give a deadline for the arrests expressing confidence that the culprits would be arrested soon.
Manipal rape case: Investigation goes slow due to paucity of information
MANIPAL: The Udupi police are working with one hand tied to behind their back with the victim, who was allegedly abducted and gang raped by three miscreants at Manipal on Thursday night, still not in a state of mind to give full details of the turn of events on that fateful night.
Also police had goofed up by setting a larger perimeter without monitoring the vicinity from where the girl was abducted from. The police have been questioning several persons and four have been taken for serious questioning. Udupi Superintendent of Police MB Boralingaiah said: We have not arrested anybody nor taken into custody. We are questioning four persons based on the clues we have got. So on what clues the police working on?
Additional Director General of Police (Law and Order) Bipin Gopalakrishna said: “We have got some bit of information from the victim that there was a small Ganesh idol and light attached to it on the auto dashboard. We have also learnt from informants that the auto while speeding had hit a barricade and has sustained some damage in the front. ”
“Based on these clues we are calling auto drivers whose vehicle matches this description. We had found that in some auto’s the place where idol is usually kept has been removed. These are all persons of interest to us. They will be longer questioning hours for those auto drivers or persons who lie to us. We are basically checking where they were at that point of time. We are not going by their version only, we are also checking the cell phone details available from towers where a particular person’s cell phone was active,” Bipin added.
“The police officer said of the 10,000 odd auto’s in the district only 3,000 have been checked so far by the three teams on the job. We have taken auto union president and members into confidence to let us know if somebody had seen an unidentified auto in their jurisdiction,” he said.
Inspector General of Police (Western Range) Pratap Reddy said: “There are 37 police staff at Manipal station and 200 university security personnel. If this has happened in spite of this, it means that we have to beef up security further. Udupi Superintendent of Police MB Boralingaiah said the police had set up nakabandhi at boundaries of the town sensing that miscreants had made away from the town as the police had got the information about half an hour after the incident. ”
“In fact police personnel had just had rounds of the particular area from where the student was abducted. The SP sensed that the perpetrators were within six to seven km radius itself and the police never expected them to return her back near the apartment. He also said: we are not clear whether the miscreants had left her or she returned back on her own. We did not do anything in the vicinity,” he rued.