Modasa rape-murder: 3 of 4 accused arrested

Source: Ahmedabad Mirror

Jan 13, Trio, including prime accused, surrendered on Friday night; they are accused of abduction, gangrape and murder of the 19-yr-old Dalit girl on January 1

Three of the four persons accused of abduction, gangrape and murder of a 19-year-old Dalit girl in Modasa surrendered before the local police on Friday night. They were promptly placed under arrested. The car, a Hyundai i20, which was allegedly used to abduct the girl, was seized by the police. The girl’s body was found hanging from a tree in Saira village of Modasa town of Aravalli district.

Following this, her family members lodged an FIR on January 7 accusing four persons-Bimal Bharwad, Darshan Bharwad, Satish Bharwad and Jigar-of rape and murder. Of these, Bimal, Darshan and Jigar surrendered at Modasa rural police station. They were arrested and booked by SC/ST Cell of Aravalli police. The fourth accused, Satish Bharwad, is still on the run.

The car belongs to Bharat Bharwad, father of Bimal who is the prime accused in the case. According to the victim’s sister, also the key witness in the case, the accused kidnapped her on January 1 when the sisters were shopping in Modasa city. The sister claimed she was allegedly threatened by Bimal against divulging the details. However, when the victim did not return the next day and the family began desperately looking for her, she revealed the incident to them. Interestingly, this is the first time that the police have taken her statement. Aravalli SP Mayur Patil was unavailable for comment. There have been massive protests in Modasa, Viramgam and Ahmedabad

by members of the Dalit community seeking justice for the girl. A protest demanding justice for the victim was held in Viramgam taluka of Ahmedabad district on Sunday. Dalit activist Kirit Rathod said, “It was a non-denominational protest attended by around 1,000 people of all religions demanding justice not for a Dalit girl but for a daughter of India.”

The girl’s family, community members and activists have alleged negligence on part of Modasa police inspector NK Bharwad who allegedly refused to first file a missing person’s report on January 2 and then a case of rape and murder against the suspects on January 5 when the body of the girl was found. The FIR was filed only on January 7 after Dalit leaders and activists met the district collector and KK Ojha, ADGP of SC/ST Cell of Gujarat police. It is learnt that a departmental inquiry has been set up against the local police to check for negligence.

The case got national attention when actors Retiesh and Genelia Deshmukh tweeted about it.

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