Goa minister’s son gets bail in rape case

November 10th, 2008 - 1:37 pm ICT by IANS  

Panaji, Nov 10 (IANS) Goa Education Minister Atanasio Monserrate’s son Rohit, charged with raping a minor German girl, was granted conditional bail here Monday, a day after the victim’s mother sought to withdraw her complaint saying she was “frustrated” with the police probe. Rohit, 21, was in police custody since his arrest Nov 4 for allegedly raping and sending lewd SMS messages to the 14-year-old German girl.

The accused was released on a bail bond of Rs.10,000 and has been asked to report to the Calangute police station every day for the next three days.

His father, Atanasio Monserrate told reporters outside the Goa Children’s Court premises here that he was relieved and maintained that he had “full faith in the judiciary”.

“We have just got bail now. I have always maintained that this entire case is nothing but a result of political rivalry,” he added.

Rohit has repeatedly maintained that he was innocent.

On Sunday, the mother of the 14-year-old victim sought to withdraw her complaint as she was “dissatisfied and frustrated” with the police probe.

Her counsel Aires Rodrigues told IANS that the mother was disgusted at the manner in which the police and the state administration were handling the case.

“The 14-year-old victim is being treated like the accused,” Rodrigues had said.

In her complaint submitted to the Calangute police Oct 2, the German mother had complained that Rohit had raped her daughter and was sending her lewd SMSs. The police refused to register the complaint and took cognisance of it 12 days later, only after the German Consul General Walter Stechel wrote to the Goa chief secretary asking him to “vigorously” investigate the case.

The police and the state administration, whose role has been described as “dubious” by Rodrigues, delayed the arrest of Rohit by more than a fortnight, on the pretext that the arrest would be carried out only after the girl deposed before a magistrate. Rodrigues had claimed that the state administration was “colluding to ensure that Rohit wasn’t arrested”.

Rohit, in whose name the police had issued a Look Out Notice, finally surrendered Nov 4.

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