Moga bus incident: Family refuses to cremate victim

Moga: The family of the teenage girl, who was killed after being molested and thrown off a moving bus belonging to the ruling Badal family in Punjab, has refused to cremate her till the administration fulfils their demands for compensation and cancellation of the transport firm's permit.

Also Read: Girl jumps off Punjab bus to escape molesters, dies

The family members along with representatives of various political parties, including opposition Congress and AAP, farmers organisations and social bodies are sitting on a dharna in front of the local Civil Hospital where the mother of the girl, who was also thrown off the bus, is recuperating.

AAP MP from Patiala Dharambir Gandhi has also joined the protest at the Civil Hospital here. Sukhdev Singh, father of the victim, said they would not cremate the girl till their demands are accepted including Rs 50 lakh compensation, employment to one member of the family, free treatment to the injured and cancellation of route permits of buses of Orbit Aviation in whose bus the incident took place two days back.

The body of the girl has been kept in the mortuary of the Civil Hospital. BKU (Ekta) leader Sukhdev Singh said the protestors supported the demand of the victim's family.

DIG of Ferozepur Range Amar Singh Chahal told reporters that he also met the family to persuade them to perform the cremation but they did not relent.

The four accused arrested yesterday were produced before the court of Judicial Magistrate First Class (JMFC) Pratima Mahajan, who remanded them to police custody till May 4.

Moga Senior Superintendent of Police (SSP) J S Khehra said that investigations were being conducted in the bus molestation case as also the second alleged gang rape incident.

Congress and AAP are holding separate demonstrations at Baghapurana near here in protest against the two incidents. Punjab Congress President Partap Singh Bajwa and former MP Jagmeet Brar are leading the Congress dharna of around 150 persons in front of the police station at Baghapurana.

AAP MP Bhagwant Mann is leading his party's protest dharna outside the office of the Deputy Superintendent of Police of Baghapurana with around 500 protestors. Both the Congress and AAP are demanding action against the accused in both the cases.They are also demanding action against the owners of Orbit Aviation.

Bhagwant Mann said when officials of Uber taxi service could be questioned in connection with the alleged rape in their cab by a driver, why can't the owners of Orbit Aviation be interrogated. He said that in the Goa incident (relating to detection of a CCTV camera directed towards the changing room where Union Minister Smriti Irani had gone) the entire top management was issued notices to join the investigation.

Mann questioned why different yardsticks were being adopted in this case. Punjab Police chief Sumedh Saini had said yesterday that conductor Sukhminder Singh, cleaner Gurdip Singh and another accused known to them were the main perpetrators, while driver Ranjit Singh has been arrested for his "culpability" of being at the wheel when the alleged incident took place.

Saini said a case of murder under section 302 and other relevant sections including 307 (attempt to murder), 354 (assault or criminal force to woman with intent to outrage her modesty), 34 (common intention) of IPC has been registered in connection with the incident.

The bus has been impounded. In the second incident, a man allegedly involved in the gangrape of a 20-year-old woman in Mari Mustafa village was arrested here today even as raids were on to trace four other accused who are on the run. Jaswant Singh, one of the accused, has been arrested in the gangrape case, IG (Bathinda zone) P S Umranangal said.

He said police teams have been carrying out raids to arrest others involved in the case. The district has been in the news lately for cases of attack on women.

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