Haryana hands over Sarita rape, suicide case to CBI

June 17th, 2008 - 8:44 am ICT by IANS  

Chandigarh, June 16 (IANS) Facing flak over the handling of the alleged rape of a woman by policemen and her suicide, the Haryana government Monday asked the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) to probe the matter. Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda Monday ordered that the CBI investigate the matter. An official spokesman of the government said a communication was being sent to the central government in this regard.

Sarita, a young woman from Rohtak town of Haryana, had consumed a pesticide, Celphos, in the office of Haryana’s Additional Director General of Police (ADGP) (law and order) V.B. Singh June 9 at the state police headquarters in Panchkula town near here.

She drank the poison in the presence of her two small daughters after accusing the Rohtak police, the home district of Chief Minister Hooda, of shielding the policemen who raped her inside a police station April 10.

She gave a suicide note to the ADGP before committing suicide. She died later in hospital.

Taking suo moto notice of reports about the rape and suicide, the Punjab and Haryana High Court last Thursday asked the state government to reply within two weeks how it would ensure a fair probe into the rape case. The next hearing has been fixed for July 2.

A high court vacation bench had expressed apprehension that the probe against the two police constables would not be fair. It stated that every effort would be made by the state police, which is investigating the matter, to save senior officers who were equally to blame for the lapses after her rape.

The government’s announcement handing over the case to CBI came even before the reply was filed.

The Haryana policemen, head constable Balraj and constable Seelak Ram, were arrested Wednesday. An embarrassed Haryana government transferred the Rohtak range inspector general Anil Dawra, superintendent of police Hanif Qureshi and deputy superintendent of police (DSP) Dheeraj Sethi after the suicide.

Sarita took the extreme step after the Rohtak police refused to register a rape case against the two policemen. Her complaint was registered May 31 - 50 days after her rape.

Both the policemen had called Sarita to a police station in Rohtak April 10 on the plea of signing some papers after her husband was arrested a day earlier in a vehicle theft case. She was raped by both inside the police station.

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