2 out of 5 arrested, in Hyderabad’s Gangrape Case
Hyderabad police said Friday night they had arrested two of five juveniles allegedly involved in the gang rape of a 17-year-old in an upscale area of the city a week ago.
The assault happened on the evening of May 28, with a complaint being lodged on May 31. However, it took police another three days to take action. The BJP alleged that two of the accused are being sheltered by their political families.
On Friday night, DCP Joel Davis said two of the five suspects had been taken into custody and were being questioned. Earlier, SHO S Rajashekar Reddy told The Indian Express that the gang rape had been confirmed and they had identified the accused. “We are searching for them.” There was no comment on the BJP’s allegation. Police seized a Mercedes Benz belonging to one of the accused, in which the assault allegedly took place. The driver is being questioned, police said.
Officials said the 17-year-old had gone to a pub with a friend for a birthday party. Her father, who lodged the complaint, said they had permitted her to go as it was to be a no-alcohol party.
The girl was gang-raped in a car by five minor boys she met at a non-alcoholic party attended by nearly 150 friends at a pub on Saturday night.
Based on a complaint from the girl’s father on May 31, the police had initially booked a case under Section 354 (assault or criminal force on a woman to outrage her modesty) of the Indian Penal Code. They altered the case to Section 376D (gang rape) and added Sections 9 and 10 of the POCSO Act, following a medical examination of the girl and recording of her statement.
While she was at the pub, officials said, she was befriended by a group of minors who offered to drop her home. They first went to a bakery where they purchased snacks. They then allegedly drove the 17-year-old to a secluded area and proceeded to gangrape her. Later in the night, they dropped her back at the pub and left.
Police have retrieved video footage from at least six CCTV cameras in the vicinity of the pub.
The girl initially told her parents that the bruises on her hands were caused by a fall, but it was when they noticed other injuries and questioned her that she admitted she had been assaulted.
The 17-year-old was counselled by women police, during which she described the gang rape. A medical examination later confirmed the assault. Police said the teenager was in shock, and severely traumatised.
BJP chief spokesperson K Krishna Sagar Rao alleged that there were five accused, including the sons of two prominent local politicians. “The Hyderabad police have not yet arrested any accused despite the criminal complaint lodged by the parents of the victim, and the alleged criminals’ car being impounded,” Rao said.
The BJP also held a protest at the police station concerned, demanding arrest of the accused, with some party workers forcing their way in before they were removed. MLA Raja Singh said police were not making any announcement about the case because they do not want to include the names of the real culprits. “This is an elaborate plot to protect the real accused and name someone else… The state government is offering them protection,” Singh alleged.
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