The case of the alleged gang-rape of a 17-year-old student of Model College, Dombivli, on June 23 has taken a new turn with the chief minister of Kerala, Oommen Chandy, and the director-general of police, Kerala, KS Balasubramanian, calling on the Thane police and asking them to solve the case quickly.
Several Kerala politicians have called the Thane police, seeking an early breakthrough in the investigation. The victim is a Malayali and hence leaders and officials from Kerala are evincing interest in the case.
According to a complaint lodged with the Manpada police station, the student came home from college and afterwards went out to buy milk. Apparently, a youth known to her invited her to a place for his birthday celebration.
He allegedly served her a spiked soft drink and raped her. He was joined by his friends later. The police have registered an offence of gang rape against unknown people and have sent vaginal swabs etc to the forensic laboratory for examination.
A police officer said medical examination has revealed scratch marks on the victim's private part which point to "either attempted rape or rape". "We are waiting for the forensic result," he said.
A large number of Keralites staged a protest against "police apathy". But police sources said the allegation was entirely baseless.
A senior officer said an additional commissioner of police is personally supervising the investigation and a joint commissioner is monitoring it. "We have sent the dna samples of a few suspects for forensic examination. The victim had mentioned the first name of a student of the college," an officer said.
Dr MR Nair, principal of the 25-year-old college, said the photographs of all students with their names were shown by the police to the girl, but she could not identify anyone."
Another school official said the crime happened outside the campus and the college cannot be blamed for the incident. "We are fully cooperating with the police," he said.
The police explained that they cannot arrest anyone without prima facie evidence. After a Malayalam TV channel ran news of the crime, Chandy and others took up the matter with the Thane police. Thane police commissioner Vijay Kamble told dna: "We were prompt in registering a complaint... We are conducting the investigation on a top priority basis. We are determined to solve it at the earliest."
The case took a new turn on Wednesday when someone placed on WhatsApp a particularly nasty posting against the victim along with her photographs. The police are investigating this aspect as well.
The victim is undergoing treatment at a local hospital.
Two days after 12 people were arrested by the Goregaon police for rioting in a snooker parlour, the victims have alleged that the parlour is a den for junkies. The incident took place after parents of a 14-year-old who frequents the Royal Pool Game parlour found a small packet of marijuana in his school bag.