Kolkata, Nov 23 (IANS) Three days after a 16-year-old girl was allegedly gang-raped and killed in West Bengal’s South 24-Parganas district, police on Monday formally pressed charges of rape.
The police move came on a day when a public interest litigation was also filed before the Calcutta High Court seeking a CID probe.
The police action led to the family members performing the final rites of the class 10 girl, who was abducted and allegedly raped and killed in Kakdwip area of the district.
The victim’s family and locals have been staging demonstrations and refused to cremate the body accusing police of refusing to register a rape case despite receiving a complaint.
The locals also observed a strike during the day demanding death penalty for the culprits.
“We have pressed charges of rape against a 24-year-man who has been arrested in this connection,” sub-divisional police officer Shib Prasad Patra said on Monday.
Patra said rape was included in the charges following the post-mortem examination report which indicated sexual assault on the victim.
The officer said rape was not included in the charges as the family members had not mentioned about the offence in the initial complaint.
The girl went missing on November 20 while returning home from her tuition classes. Her semi-naked body was found near a water body later in the night.
Meanwhile, public interest litigation was also filed before the Calcutta High Court seeking a CID probe.
“The police have acted in partisan manner and we have no faith on them. So we have asked the investigation be handed over to the Criminal Investigation Department. We have also urged for a compensation of Rs.20 lakh for the victim’s family,” said petitioner Anindya Sundar Das.
The incident has also acquired political colour.
While state minister and Trinamool Congress leader Manturam Pakhira accused the opposition of playing ‘politics over rape’, BJP leader Locket Chatterjee accused the administration of shielding the guilty.
Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) MLA Samik Bhattacharya who went to meet the family members of the victim also faced protests by angry locals.
“We have not come here to indulge in politics but to be part of the united protest against such atrocities,” he later told the media.