In what can only be termed a sickening episode, a 63-year-old man – now arrested – twice raped his niece, who is HIV positive. The girl opened up to an NGO and a complaint was registered at Bhandup police station on Monday.
The accused, Ravindra Kharat, and the 16-year-old victim stayed together at the former’s Bhandup residence. According to cops the teen’s parents passed on the deadly virus to her, before they succumbed to AIDS.
Speaking to MiD DAY sub-inspector Deepali Kulkarni said, “The girl’s mother died in 2008 and her father in 2010. Since then she was staying with her grandparents. In June 2012, she had moved in with her mother’s sister and subsequently the latter’s husband had sexually assaulted her on two occasions, despite knowing that she is HIV positive.”
According to police officials, the victim learnt about her condition in 2010 and has been receiving treatment since.
“The victim stayed with the family of the accused who has two daughters, both now married. Kharat was employed as a driver with a doctor working in a Bhandup-based hospital,” Kulkarni added.
The girl says the accused abused her when her aunt was not at home. Kharat has been claiming innocence, while his wife too says the victim is lying.
When asked whether the accused too has been infected with HIV, Kulkarni said, “We had sent him for medical examination. The reports are awaited.”
Letter of law
Kharat has been booked under section 376 (punishment for rape) of the Indian Penal Code and sections 4 and 6 of the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act, 2012. He was produced in court on Monday and has been remanded in police custody.