Bengaluru: In a case that sent shockwaves across the country, police on Tuesday arrested two gym instructors for the alleged rape of a six-year-old in a classroom in Vibgyor school in Bangalore. The two gymnastics instructors are being questioned by police today.
“A complaint of rape has turned out to be a case of gangrape after the arrest of two more persons in the Vibgyor High School case,” City Police Commissioner M N Reddi told reporters here.
The alleged incident had occurred on July 2, but the complaint with police was lodged by the victim’s parents on July 14.
Reddi said the two accused – Lal Giri and Wasim Pasha – gym instructors, were arrested last night and booked under Section 376D of Indian Penal Code (intercourse by any member of the management or staff of a hospital with a woman in that hospital).
Relevant sections under Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act (POCSO) have been also invoked against them, he said.
This is the fourth arrest in the case after those of school skating instructor Mustafa and its Founder-Chairman Rustom Kerawalla.
He said investigations have ruled out the direct involvement of Mustafa, who was held by police as a suspect based on “circumstantial evidence available at that point of time.” Initially, police had announced that Mustafa was the main accused.
Reddi said that with the arrest of Giri and Pasha, Bangalore Police have solved the case, that had evoked a public outrage and led to severe protests.
Earlier, on Saturday police issued tough guidelines to schools for safety of children and warned of prosecution in the event of its non-compliance.
Under the guidelines, school buses should fix GPS and CCTV cameras and drivers should be isolated and not allowed to mingle with the children after they had parked the vehicles.
“Unnecessary interaction with the children… that should be avoided because we have found that these people also have been accused in some cases,” Bangalore Police Commissioner M N Reddi told reporters releasing the guidelines.
Schools are required to depute one Floor Vigilance Officer, who would sit in a transparent cabin, where he could keep a watch on “someone coming – whether children are going to bathroom, whether someone is entering classrooms. If they see any problem they will report it to the school authorities,” he said.
Areas like gym and swimming pools and other sports facilities should be confined to persons who are authorised and connected with the subject they are teaching, Reddi said.
“Teachers cannot come in the skating ring and loiter around. Only the skating instructor should be there,” he said, as the measures came after nearly week-long protests with public anger mounting over the shocking incident.
The incident happened on July 2 at high-profile Vibgyor High School but the complaint was lodged by parents with police on July 14.
The incident had led to change in senior top echelon of police with Reddi coming in as city police chief.
“I am issuing an order to all schools including Vibgyor under Karnataka Police Act to implement the guidelines and we are also telling that if they do not implement guidelines they will be prosecuted under section 188 of the Indian Penal Code (negligence leading to injury and danger to the life of a person),” Reddi said.
If Vibgyor did not implement the guidelines by August 14, the management will be booked under Section 188 of IPC, Reddi said, adding, the deadline for other schools is August 31.
Mustafa, an skating instructor accused of raping the 6-year-old school girl, at a school is produced by the police at a press conference in Bengaluru on Monday. (Photo: AP)
According to the guidelines, parents who come to drop and pick children should be issued identity cards, and if they are unable to come they should furnish mobile numbers to school authorities so that they could SMS the identity of the third person who comes to pick or drop children, Reddi said.
A rash of rape cases in the city in recent days had triggered public outrage and revulsion over rising number of sexual offences against women and children, with government coming under fire for not doing enough to curb them.
Apart from the school incident, a 22-year woman was allegedly raped on July 10 midnight when she was seated in a car with her friend as four persons forcibly entered their car and drove them away with one of them committing the crime.