This is the second such incident in 10 days; the girl’s body was found barely 100 metres from the spot where she was sleeping next to eight family members
In the second such incident in ten days, a five-year-old girl was dragged away from a footpath in Borivli, where she was sleeping next to her family, yesterday. The girl was raped and murdered barely 100 metres from the spot where her family was sleeping, and her naked body was left to rot under the Sanjay Gandhi National Park flyover.
The girl, who studies in Std II in a municipal school, was sleeping beside her mother, six siblings and her grandmother under the flyover when she was kidnapped by an unidentified accused between 4 am and 7 am yesterday. The girl’s father was in Pune for some work.
When the family woke up, they saw her naked body lying a very short distance away from where they were sleeping. Police said there were strangulation marks on the girl’s neck and her face had decomposed and had been bitten by a rat.
Speaking to mid-day, the victim’s grandmother said, “There was a Ganpati Visarjan near our place on Saturday and we came back to the footpath, had dinner and slept around 11 pm. I woke up around 4 am once, but did not check to see if everyone was there before going back to sleep.
When all of us finally woke up around 7 am, we realised that my granddaughter was missing. We looked for her everywhere and then found her body barely 100 metres from where we were sleeping. She was naked and there was blood on her face and private parts.” The bridge is maintained by the MMRDA, which has hired two watchmen for its security, but they are supposed to be there only in the daytime.
When the police questioned the security guards, they said that they had tried to prevent the family from sleeping under the bridge, but they would not listen. A few days back, the police had also caught four people under the bridge for consuming drugs. They were arrested and are still in police custody.
ACP Dilip Rupwate told mid-day, “We suspect that the accused is known to the vicitm’s family and have detained more than 25 people for interrogation. There is no CCTV camera near the footpath but were checking other cameras nearby. We are trying to identify and nab the accused as soon as possible.”
mid-day had reported on August 22 (‘Man rapes 5-year-old girl, after failing to rape her mother) how a drug addict had dragged a five-year-old girl off the footpath in Kandivli’s Saibaba Nagar, where she was sleeping next to her mother, and raped her. In that case, the girl had lived to tell the sordid tale.
Speaking to mid-day yesterday, Senior Police Inspector Mahipati Pandharmise of the Kandivli police said, “We haven’t found the accused yet. Two or three days after the incident, we made a sketch of the accused with the help of the survivor’s mother and the blurry CCTV footage. But, when we showed that sketch to the victim, she said it did not match her attacker. A new sketch was made with the survivor’s inputs.
The accused is around 20 years old. The survivor’s mother knew him and he had allegedly tried to rape her too. Right now, we are very close to arresting the accused.” Asked how the girl was doing, Pandharmise said, “She is recovering and will be discharged this week.”
Given the similarities between the two cases, the Kandivli police are collaborating with the Borivli police and they are not ruling out the possibility of both rapes being committed by the same man, said a senior police official.