As investigations into the gang rape of the 22-year-old photojournalist continues, another woman has come forward alleging that the same men raped her at Shakti Mills after tying up her boyfriend with a dupatta and threatening them of dire consequences.
An 18-year-old woman, who works as a receptionist, approached the NM Joshi police alleging that she too was raped at the mill area in Mahalaxmi on July 31. The survivor told the authorities that she and her boyfriend had met that evening and had decided to go to Mahalaxmi where he ran a small catering firm.
Around 7.30 pm, after visiting her boyfriend’s agency, they were walking to Mahalaxmi station when they decided to go to Parel through the mill area. “The girl and boy were fooled by the accused to take a shortcut through the mill. The 18-year-old said she saw that three of them were drinking but ignored it and decided to navigate their way through the mill. But, soon, the three accused intercepted the couple and threatened them with a broken bottle. They then tied up the boy with a dupatta and brutalised the girl,” said a police official, adding that the three called two of their friends and continued to rape the girl.
Traumatised and scarred by the incident, the survivor with her boyfriend then left for Chattisgarh and got married to each other over there, said an official from the NM Joshi Marg police.
Rape comes to light
In the meantime, the survivor’s mother had lodged a missing person’s complaint at the Bhandup police station. “When the girl returned to the city, the mother brought her to the station to alert us of her return and that is when we learnt that she had fled Mumbai after being gang raped by unknown accused in the Shakti Mills compound. We immediately registered the case and transferred it to N M Joshi police station in whose jurisdiction the matter had taken place,” said Shrirang Nadgouda, senior police inspector, Bhandup police station.
During the course of investigation and after the photojournalist’s case broke, the girl identified the three accused in that crime to be the same men who had raped her. She identified Vijay Jadhav alias Mannya, Kasim Bangali and Mohammed Saleem Ansari. Out of the remaining two, one was later identified to be a minor, who is now detained by the NM Joshi police. He will be produced in a juvenile court today.
The last accused is Mohammed Ashfaq Dawood Shaikh who is yet to be arrested. “We are on positive leads and have already detained one person,” said Deputy commissioner of Police (Zone III), Vinayak Deshmukh.