After an extensive manhunt by Pune City Police, eight persons, including two employees of Indian Railways and five auto-rickshaw drivers, have been arrested.
A 14-year-old girl was abducted from Pune railway station area and gangraped in different places in the city last week. After an extensive manhunt by Pune City Police, eight persons, including two employees of Indian Railways and five auto-rickshaw drivers, have been arrested.
Search is still on for five more persons suspected to be involved in the crime.
The girl, who has suffered severe mental trauma, has been hospitalised and kept under observation. An FIR was registered.
Police said they started looking into the case after the girl was reported missing by her family. She had reportedly left her house and gone to Pune railway station on August 31.
A police official, who is part of the probe, said, “… The girl went to the Pune railway station area as she wanted to travel outside the city to meet a friend. An auto-rickshaw driver, who is one of the arrested suspects, told her that the train she was looking for was not scheduled until the next day. On the pretext of giving her a lift and helping her find a place to stay, he took her to another area. The man is then believed to have called his accomplices. Over the next several hours, the girl was taken to different places and gangraped multiple times.”
He added, “The suspects have taken her to secluded areas, places with either a tree cover or a lodge. The girl was also raped in the rickshaw and even on the premises of the Railways office. The suspects threatened to harm her and her family members as they continued to subject her to sexual abuse.”
The police were approached by the family of the girl on September 1, when they filed a missing persons report. As per procedure, the police registered a case of kidnapping as the missing complaint was about a minor girl.
After being released by the perpetrators, the girl is believed to have travelled outside Pune, and finally traced by police on September 5. She was then taken to a hospital for medical assistance.
Based on various leads, including those from security camera footage, police have arrested eight persons, including two employees of the Railways.
A police official said that five of the arrested suspects are rickshaw drivers, one is an air conditioning repairman and two are employees of Railways. While police have got the names of five more suspects, no details were available about them.
Divisional Railway Manager of Pune, Renu Sharma, said that immediately after being informed of the alleged involvement of two Railways employees, the administration suspended them.
“We didn’t know the identity of the accused. Once the names were shared with us on Monday evening, we immediately suspended them. We are extending our cooperation to police,” said Sharma.
Another police officer said, “The girl has been hospitalised and kept under observation… her condition is stable. She has suffered serious mental trauma. She and her family are being provided all possible assistance, including counselling.”
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