Hyderabad gang-rape case: Fourth accused, also a minor, detained
The police have detained the fourth suspect, who is a minor, in the Hyderabad gang-rape case amid widespread outrage on Sunday. The fifth suspect, an adult, is yet to be imprisoned. On May 28, a 17-year-old girl was reportedly gang-raped in a car in the Telangana capital's Jubilee Hills after attending a party hosted by her classmates. So far, five suspects have been booked.
Dr. Tamilisai Soundararajan, the Governor of Telangana, has requested a police report on the matter. According to an official statement on the issue, "Deeply anguished over this heinous incident, the Hon'ble Governor has ordered the submission of a detailed report within two days on the issue from the Chief Secretary and the Director-General of Police."
The National Commission for the Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) demanded answers from the Hyderabad Police on Friday for the delay in filing the FIR in the case. Jubilee Hills is among the city's affluent neighborhoods. According to reports, the incident occurred on May 28 and the accused involved come from politically connected families. On May 31, the case was reported to the police.
The police arrested Saduddin Malik (18) on Friday. A juvenile was also identified on Friday, but because it was nighttime, he couldn't be apprehended as per rules. He was arrested on Saturday morning. Another key accused was identified as Omair Khan (18). DCP (West Zone) Joel Davis clarified that, as per the girl's statement and other evidence, no MLA's son was among the accused.
The victim couldn't reveal anything due to trauma and shock except just one name. The police have formed special teams for the case. "We've identified five culprits as per CCTV footage and as per the statement of the victim," the police said. The crime allegedly involves children and grandchildren of politicians; one of the juveniles is the son of a prominent person, it added.
According to the DCP, the girl's father said that his 17-year-old daughter had gone to a non-alcoholic party at a pub in Jubilee Hills on Saturday. After the girl returned, he noticed minor injuries on her neck. Thereafter, a case was registered under Sections 354 and 323 of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) and Section 9 read with 10 of the POCSO Act.
The Telangana Police said that the girl had befriended one of the boys at the pub. The CCTV footage also showed the girl standing outside the pub with the suspected accused, who had offered to drop her home. However, they parked the car in the Jubilee Hills area and reportedly took turns raping her while others stood guard outside the car.
The Bharatiya Janata Party's (BJP) Telangana unit accused the police of slow action and guarding the names of rapists due to the alleged involvement of ruling Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) leaders in the matter. BJP recently held a dharna outside a police station. TRS Working President and Telangana Minister KT Rama Rao earlier asked authorities to take "immediate and stern action" in the case.
"Law protects the identity of a rape victim. But in the case of a minor girl's rape in Hyderabad, the names of the rapists are being guarded zealously. After all, what is the compulsion?" Amit Malviya of the BJP tweeted on Saturday, attacking the state government. "TRS leaders who were chest-thumping after the extra-judicial killing of rapists in 2019 are whimpering," he added.