Suicide by gangrape victim, rape of two-year old and custodial death rock Madhya Pradesh

While Hathras and Uttar Pradesh continue to grab national attention, Madhya Pradesh too is witnessing a spate of lawlessness, crime against Dalits and women and mishandling by the police

Suicide by gangrape victim, rape of two-year old and custodial death rock Madhya Pradesh

Chandrakant Naidu

Three cases of rape and murder in the last few days have rocked Madhya Pradesh.

On Friday a Dalit woman committed suicide in Narsinghpur district, after police ignored her complaint against three people who she said had detained her and raped her for four consecutive days. While in a belated action an ASI was arrested for not registering the complaint, police were accused of having detained the husband and brother in law of the victim, who had accompanied her to lodge a complaint.

Sub Divisional Officer of Police (SDOP) S R Yadav, who defended police action, was shifted out on Saturday, October 3. He had claimed that the 32-year-old woman and her family had verbally complained to the police on Monday and they were asked to return the next morning for medical examination.

The victim’s relatives and the accused came to blows the next day over the incident and police booked members of both the parties excluding the victim, Yadav had said by way of explanation.

On Thursday police arrested Sonu Thakur alias Sonu Gond (21) and Shubham Mallah (20) for kidnapping, raping and killing a two-year-old girl in Jabalpur district. The victim’s body was found in a field two weeks ago and the autopsy revealed rape and murder.

In yet another rape case, police announced this week a reward of Rs 10,000 for information about unidentified accused involved in a gang rape in Khargone district, 328 kilometres from Bhopal.

“The 16-year-old girl was with her brother when three people came and beat her brother up. They took the girl with them and raped her. The brother informed the villagers, who reached the crime spot following which the accused fled, leaving their bike behind,” said Shailendra Singh Chauhan, Superintendent of police (SP), Khargone.

A custodial death sparked violent protests this week in Satna. Family members of the 45-years old deceased alleged that he was shot dead by a drunken police inspector. Singhpur police had picked up the deceased from his house in connection with a theft case.

Satna Superintendent of police Riyaz Iqbal tried to paint it as suicide."Singhpur police station inspector Vikram Pathak had kept his service revolver on the table (inside the police station). Kushwaha snatched the weapon and shot himself dead," the SP had told the media.

The chief minister ordered the transfer of the SP and announced Rs 10 lakh as ‘aid’ for the family of the deceased. Inspector Pathak and constable Manish were suspended and a magisterial inquiry was ordered.

The Special Director General of Police (public prosecution), Purushottam Sharma was also transferred and ‘removed from duty’ this week after a video of him assaulting his wife went viral on social media. The government didn’t announce Sharma’s new posting.

The incident took place last Sunday when Sharma’s wife reportedly found him visiting a lady friend. This led to a heated argument between the two. Sharma’s son, Partha, a senior officer in the Indian Revenue Service, is said to have made the video and uploaded it on social media. Partha is said to have lodged a complaint with the Home Minister Narottam Mishra. The minister confirmed having received the complaint and said it was under consideration.

A 1986-batch IPS officer, Sharma could be seen beating his wife after pinning her down on the floor. Two other men in the house could do little to stop the assault.

Purushottam Sharma did not avoid the media. He said it was his personal matter and he would deal with it. “There is no place for a fight in a family. If my wife has problems with me why is she putting up with me? My married life of 32 years is troubled. My own people are shaming me,” he said.

Sharma’s name had earlier come up in a honey trap scandal while he was the Special DG of Cyber Cell and STF. Sharma had accused the then DG VK Singh of maligning the image of the Police Department.

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Published: 03 Oct 2020, 8:18 PM