‘Cops put minor with jailed criminals, got him killed’
LUCKNOW: In a display of scant regard for law of the land, Police in Badaun booked a 15-year-old rape accused and sent him to Badaun jail declaring him an adult. The rape accused was found murdered within 48 hours of his stepping into the Badaun jail which happens to be over occupied by hardened criminals. The victim’s family is now crying for justice.
On May 22, Alapur police arrested Ramesh alias Rohit Rathore of Myaun locality for alleged kidnapping and rape of a minor. Ramesh was a student of class XII at Saraswati Shishu Mandir and his victim was a class junior to him. Allegations are that in the FIR, the accused was shown to be 19 years old despite repeated requests of his family that he was a minor.
“I met the circle officer the day Ramesh was taken away by the police and showed him his High School certificate which carries his photo as well. But no one listened to us,” says Vinod Rathore, the elder brother of Ramesh, who is pursuing graduation. “They misled us about the date, time and court where they were to produce him. By the time we came to know that police has taken him away to court, the court had already sent him to 14-day judicial remand,” he says talking to the TOI on phone from Badaun.
The following day when the Rathores approached the jail authorities, they were shocked to learn that the documents of arrest and court orders related to Ramesh showed him as 22-years-old. The family decided to approach the district court on the issue on Monday morning. Ramesh, however, was found murdered in his barrack on Saturday evening.
“Now we have understood why police put him in their records as an adult. They had connived with the girl’s family to send him to jail where he was murdered by hardened criminals already lodged in the cell in the knowledge of jail authorities,” says Ramesh’s uncle Brijesh also of Badaun.
Ironically, after Ramesh’s body was recovered from the barracks hanging from the iron mesh of the toilet ventilator, police declared it was suicide. At the instance of Ramesh’s family and local residents, the district magistrate ordered an autopsy the same night which confirmed that he was murdered. On the basis of the post mortem report, Ramesh’s family lodged a murder case against the Badaun jailor, two of his deputies and a family member of the girl for whose alleged kidnapping and rape, Ramesh was booked.
Rathores now insist that the cops at Alapur police station who arrested Ramesh were also party to the murder. “Had they sent him to the juvenile home, this would not have happened. We kept begging them to at least verify Ramesh’s age from college where he was enrolled, but no one listened to us,” says Vinod. The Budaun district police denied the allegations leveled by Ramesh alias Rohit’s family.
The boy’s family has now approached inspector general (IG) Bareilly zone RKS Rathore for help. Members of Ramesh’s family met the IG on Wednesday and showed him all the documents that certifying the boy’s age. The High School certificate of Ramesh, which has his photograph as well, declares his date of berth as July 20, 1999. This means at the time of his murder, Ramesh was almost 15 years old. The High School certificate has been issued by Madhyamik Shiksha Parishad (Uttar Pradesh) through Shivaji SMHS School in Myaon (Badaun).