VARANASI/LUCKNOW: Alleged dilly-dallying on part of the police in initiating action against the accused who gang-raped a 12-year-old girl on Wednesday evening, triggered public outrage in Chandauli on Thursday. Irate locals, armed with sticks and rods, took to the streets and assaulted the cops on duty at the local picket. The mob also stormed the local Sakaldiha police station and ransacked the tehsil office, setting ablaze a section of the building. Action has been taken against four cops.
The locals accused the Sakaldiha police of siding with three of the rape accused as they reportedly hailed from an influential family of the region. Allegations did the rounds that though police came to know about the incident on Wednesday evening, no FIR was lodged. The victim was sent for medical examination on Thursday afternoon after people came out on streets to protest against police laxity. The medical examination of the victim was done over 18 hours after the incident was reported to the police.
The incident was reported on Wednesday evening from Urwan village under Sakaldeeha police station of Chandauli. Reports said the girl had gone to a local general store near her house when she was allegedly kidnapped by three local youths and their two unidentified aides. The accused took the girl to a deserted part of the village and raped her and later fled the scene.
The girl reached home and told her family about the incident, following which the family approached the Sakaldiha police with a written complaint and the girl was asked to narrate the entire incident to the cops. Allegations are that police did not act promptly and even tried to silence the victim, supposedly offering her family some sort of a compromise formula.
The delay on the part of the police led to a situation where neither an FIR was lodged nor the girl was sent for medical examination till Thursday morning.
When the local residents came to know about the police inaction, there was widespread resentment. The locals alleged that police were not taking action as the accused -- three of whom were identified and their names and addresses provided the moment the girl reached the police station for the first time on Wednesday - belonged to influential families.
As the police kept delaying action against the accused, the locals blocked the the Sakaldiha-Chandauli road for almost two hours. As the police allegedly failed to reach the site and pacify the protesting locals, the crisis and anger of the locals aggravated.
Thereafter, the locals marched up to the Sakaldiha police station where some of them entered into a heated exchange with the cops on duty. The situation worsened when one of the cops allegedly slapped a protester and the mob went out of control and ransacked the police station premises. A section of the mob stormed the nearby tehsil premises and torched some make-shift structures, including temporary office sheds and shops selling revenue stamps and stationery.
Chandauli SP Sharad Sachan, however, refuted allegations of delay in registration of the FIR. "The police raided the houses of the three identified accused and were trying to find out the names of their unidentified associates when the locals went berserk."
Asked about the delay in getting the victim medically examined, he said: "By the time the victim reached the police station, it was quite late in the night, hence it was decided to get her medical examination done the next morning."
Later, one inspector was removed from the police station, while a sub-inspector and two constables were suspended for alleged delay in action.