Prodded by Calcutta HC, Police Record Statement of ‘Gang-Rape Victim’

The police recorded the statement of an alleged gang-rape victim in West Bengal’s South 24 Parganas district on Tuesday, following an instruction of the Calcutta High Court to do it by 3 pm of the day.

The court also said that it expects that the accused persons will be arrested by the next date of hearing on March three.

Expressing surprise at the failure of the police to record the statement of a woman who claimed to have been gang-raped over 10 days ago, the Calcutta High Court directed the investigators to ensure that it is done by 3 pm on Tuesday.

The SP of Diamond Harbour police district Dhritiman Sarkar later said the statement of the victim was recorded on Tuesday.

Justice Rajasekhar Mantha ordered that the CRPF or the CISF provide security to her for three weeks initially.

The court directed the superintendent of police (SP), Diamond Harbour, to file a detailed report on March 3 on the progress of the investigation in the case.

Directing the SP to address in the report any omission on the part of Bishnupur police station and Bakhrahat police outpost, Justice Mantha asked the official to depute a senior officer to conduct the investigation, since the current investigating officer said that he has only two years of working experience.

“This court is pained at the casual attitude shown by the Bishnupur Police Station in dealing with an FIR under Sections 354B (assault or use of criminal force to any woman or abetting such act with the intention of disrobing her) and 376 (rape) of the IPC,” Justice Mantha said.

While noting that the apparel she was wearing during the incident and her mobile phone have not been seized till now, the court directed the police to immediately include section 376 D (gang rape) of IPC in the FIR.

The petitioner’s lawyer claimed before the court that she was gang raped on February 17, after which she went to lodge a complaint at Bakhrahat outpost of Bishnupur police station but only a general diary was made allegedly for the non-availability of a lady constable.

It was stated in the petition that thereafter she went to Bishnupur police station from where she was turned back.

It was claimed that she then went to the office of the SP, Diamond Harbour, and was made to wait for more than six hours.

The petitioner stated in the petition that the medical examination was conducted on February 18, a day after the alleged crime, on which day the FIR was also lodged at Bishnupur police station.

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