Mumbai gangrape: Shinde makes statement

Last Updated: Mon, Aug 26, 2013 07:31 hrs

New Delhi, Aug 26 (IBNS) Union Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde on Monday made a statement in the Lok Sabha on the Mumbai gangrape case amid protests by the opposition.

"All the five accused have been arrested, the government of Maharashtra will do utmost to complete the investigation and prosecute accused immediately," said Shinde.

"The statement of the male companion of the survivor has been recorded, based on that police released the sketches," he said.

He said the accused will be tried on a fast track basis.

"I trust the Maharashtra government, justice will be done. I´m sure the govt will ensure the case will be tried on fast track basis and justice will be delivered soon," said Shinde.

Immediately after his statement, the opposition lashed out at him and the Congress-led United Progressive Alliance (UPA) government.

"I want to ask the Home Minister if there a time frame for expediting rape cases. The culprits should be hanged," said Leader of the Opposition in the Lok Sabha Sushma Swaraj.

Two of the five accused in the Mumbai gangrape case have claimed to be minors, said reports on Monday.

"The mother of Kasim Sheikh, also known as Kasim Bangali, has claimed that he is a minor though he is listed in the complaint as 21. But she didn´t give any proof to support her claim," reported NDTV.

"Earlier, the grandmother of Chand Sheikh, the first accused to be arrested, also claimed he was ´only 16´ and showed a birth certificate that the police say is obviously doctored," said the news channel.

The police said Chand is at least 19.

Meanwhile, main accused in the Mumbai gangrape case, Salim Ansari, will be produced in a Mumbai court on Monday.

Maharashtra Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan said the case will be fast-tracked.

Prominent criminal lawyer Ujjwal Nikam might appear as public prosecutor in the case.

The family of the gangrape survivor of Mumbai on Sunday issued a statement thanking the media for their support with the young photojournalist who was assaulted by five men while she had gone to shoot inside an abandoned mill in the city along with a colleague.

While all five accused of the assault were arrested, the family of the girl said they hoped the culprits will get stringent punishment for the act.

They also requested media to respect their privacy so that they can get back to normal life.

The Mumbai Police has finally nabbed all the five accused with the arrest of the fifth attacker from New Delhi on Sunday even as the 22-year of photojournalist subjected to the assault reportedly said she would want to go back to work since "rape is not the end of life".

The photojournalist was gangraped when she entered Shakti Mill in Central Mumbai on Thursday last as the assailants held back her colleague by tying him up.

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