HAL police inspector taken off probe into rape attempt

Sadiq Pasha, the inspector of HAL police station, will not investigate the case pertaining to a suspected serial rapist’s attempt to sexually assault a woman in her paying guest digs in Kundalahalli Gate, east Bengaluru, on March 4, 2017.

Senior officers decided to take Pasha off the investigation after the woman alleged that he had persuaded her not to file a complaint about the sexual assault. “We have appointed Victor Simon, the inspector of Bellandur police station, as the investigating officer in the case,” M Narayan, DCP (Whitefield), told DH.

Police have, however, dismissed the woman’s allegation that the inspector asked her to not file a complaint of molestation. The following is their version of the events.

The suspect, Shivaram Reddy, entered the woman’s PG digs while she was asleep. He snatched her mobile phone and money. He then tried to rape her but she ran into the toilet and bolted it from inside. Before Reddy could take her on, the woman’s roommate showed up, forcing him to flee. The victim approached the HAL police station on March 5 and asked the police to trace her mobile phone and recover the money from the PG owner. But she was not willing to file a complaint. After much persuasion, she lodged a complaint of mobile theft. But she never mentioned the rape attempt, the officer said.

The next day, she arrived at the police station along with a group of men from Mumbai, which included a lawyer. She wanted a fresh FIR to be registered. Police refused to do that citing technical reasons but invoked IPC Section 354 (assault or criminal force to woman with intent to outrage her modesty) in the woman’s original complaint and began the probe, the officer said.

“For two days, the woman neither approached us nor made any phone calls about the rape attempt. Reddy had molested another woman on March 2. She approached the police and lodged a complaint. We registered a case and started the probe immediately. We would have booked him again had the victim mentioned the molestation attempt on March 5 itself,” the officer said.
Police believe Reddy has molested or raped more than 100 women.

He targeted women from North and Northeast India living in PG digs in Mahadevapura, Electronics City, Madiwala, HAL, HSR Layout and Kundalahalli Gate. He was caught after a gunfight on March 7 and subsequently booked under the Goonda Act.

Reddy earlier worked as a cab driver and had filmed a couple getting intimate in his vehicle. He threatened to upload the video on the Internet and raped the woman.
 

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