Court seeks report on Punjab gang-rape victim's suicide

Last Updated: Fri, Dec 28, 2012 19:19 hrs

Chandigarh: Coming down heavily on Punjab Police for insensitivity in dealing with an 18-year-old gang-rape victim, leading her to commit suicide, the Punjab and Haryana High Court Friday directed the state police to file a status report before it.

Chief Justice A.K. Sikri directed the Inspector General, Patiala range, to file the status report by Jan 8, giving reasons for the delay in registering the rape case and the action taken against the erring police officers.

The girl, who was allegedly gang-raped by three men last month in Patiala district, committed suicide Wednesday in her village Badshahpur by consuming poison after local police officers not only refused to register a case but also humiliated her by calling her to the police station repeatedly and asking uncomfortable questions.

In her suicide note, the girl mentioned her harassment by police and the fact that she was being pressurized allegedly by them to compromise with the rapists.

After her suicide, police arrested two men and a woman in the rape case.

The chief justice observed that the action of the police officials in not registering a rape case and letting the victim's tormentors roam around freely, even threatening her, left her with no option but to take the extreme step.

He said that there was immediate need to combat the "rape culture", which was increasing in the country.

Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal Friday constituted a high-level team headed by Additional Director General of Police (Crime) Jaswinder Singh to visit the village to probe the matter.

Deputy Chief Minister Sukhbir Singh Badal, who holds the home portfolio, Thursday ordered the dismissal from service of the area station house officer, Gurcharan Singh, and assistant sub-inspector Nasib. Deputy Superintendent of Police Harpreet Singh was also suspended.

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