CID to probe case of sexual assault in Birbhum

CID to probe case of sexual assault in Birbhum

The West Bengal government told the Calcutta High Court on Tuesday that it has begun initiating a CID probe into a clash in Birbhum, where policemen and Trinamool Congress members purportedly sexually assaulted a woman for information about a BJP member.

Additional Advocate General Lakshmi Gupta informed the court that the administration took the decision to ensure a free and fair investigation since the allegations were against police personnel.

The woman who was sexually assaulted is a young homemaker from Parui in Birbhum. 

Her family has claimed that policemen and Trinamool workers picked her up from her father’s house in Burdwan and then purportedly physically and sexually tortured her at a nearby field to extract information on the whereabouts of her nephew—a BJP worker who is wanted in a bomb attack case.

The incident created uproar among the Opposition, prompting Governor Keshri Nath Tripathi to seek a report from the director general of police on Monday. Subsequently, the state police suspended sub-inspector Kartik Mohan Ghosh and initiated a departmental enquiry against two other policemen, who were said to be involved in the assault.

Birbhum’s Superintendent of Police Alok Rajoria informed reporters about the suspension of the sub-inspector based on an interim probe report by Additional SP Ananda Roy. Ghosh was removed from active duty on Monday. 

“We have suspended Ghosh on the basis of prima facie evidence against him. We have also started a departmental enquiry against two constables. We’ll conduct further enquiry into the allegations,” Rajoria said. The victim’s counsel, who expressed a lack of confidence in the state police, wanted the case to be treated as that of gang-rape under Section 376 (D) of the Indian Penal Code, which was framed after the infamous Nirbhaya case of December 2012. 

The high court’s division bench directed the victim’s lawyer to move an appropriate bench for police inaction, keeping the matter open before it at the same time. A CID team is expected to visit Parui and talk to the victim and her family within the next two days, sources said.