Mumbai Crime: Local tailor confesses he raped, strangled 12-year-old

According to the police, the accused kept changing his statement since he was nabbed yesterday, but confessed to the crime; Shivaji Nagar police arrested him after a tip-off from a local resident

With the arrest of a local tailor yesterday, the police seem to have followed through on the promise they made to the parents of a 12-year-old girl who was abducted, gagged, bound, raped and then strangled brutally three days ago in Baiganwadi, Govandi (West).

mid-day’s report on October 27
mid-day’s report on October 27

After the horrific incident came to light, the police had assured the victim’s devastated parents that they would find the culprit within 48 hours, and the Shivaji Nagar police were able to make good on their promise with the help of a tip-off from a local resident.

Both the Crime Branch, as well as the local police were investigating the case, but when Shivaji Nagar officials got a tip-off from a local who had seen the accused — identified as Qasim — carry a mat on his bicycle the very night the victim went missing, the cops apprehended him at his residence.

As it happens, the tailor’s house is barely 100 metres away from the victim’s house, but he was not on familiar terms with her family. A cop, requesting anonymity, said, “The accused has been apprehended, and we are still trying to gather whether anyone else is involved in the crime.

A local had witnessed the tailor carrying a mat on a cycle on the night the victim was murdered and dumped in a nearby garbage container. The accused was picked up, after which he confessed to his crime.”

The police said the accused kept changing his statement since his arrest. According to sources, in his statement, Qasim said that the victim had come to his shop to have her wallet mended, which he had refused to do.

He said he pushed her away, at which point she fell to the ground. When she lost consciousness from the impact, Qasim got nervous and pulled his shop’s shutters down. He then took her to his residence, to check what was wrong with the girl.

According to Qasim, the victim had passed urine in her clothes, and so he took off her wet garments. He added that once he had taken her clothes off, he was tempted into sexually assaulting her. He then strangled her and wrapped her in the mat and dumped the body in a nearby garbage container.

mid-day had reported yesterday that the post-mortem revealed that the victim had been held for about eight hours between the time she was abducted and murdered. Cops later found the victim’s missing clothes and a scarf with which she had been gagged at the tailor’s house, where she was held through Saturday night.

Senior Police Inspector Dhanraj Gaikwad from Shivaji Nagar police station confirmed that the accused had been arrested, but refused to comment further on the case, saying only that the details would be disclosed at a press conference to be held today.

The victim’s parents found some consolation in the fact that the police had acted quickly. “We were informed that a local tailor, who is not known to us, has been arrested. We are not aware whether anyone else is involved. I am relieved, and hope the cops reveal details of the accused at the earliest,” said the father of the girl.

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