Mumbai: 'Victim' changes statement, rape accused gets bail
17-yr-old girl was in a relationship with her friend's brother and was 5 months pregnant; implicated a 38-yr-old driver to protect herself from her family's outrage and shield her boyfriend
A 38-year-old man, Hemant Reddy, was granted bail by the Sessions court on Monday after a 17-year-old girl implicated him. She had earlier alleged that he had raped her. In reality, she was in a physical relationship with her friend’s brother and was five months pregnant. But fearing her family’s outrage, she implicated Reddy.
What was the case?
Last November, when the girl’s mother noticed that her daughter’s belly seemed protruded, she suggested they go to a doctor for a thorough checkup. But before a doctor could be consulted, the girl went missing prompting the anxious parents to lodge a complaint at the Cuffe Parade police station. However, before the cops could take up the matter, a call to the girl’s uncle revealed that she was in his safe custody. The relieved parents brought their daughter back.
What really happened
On November 15, when the parents questioned her for leaving the house, she told them that Reddy, a driver known to her family, had raped her. According to her, she started talking to him over phone five months ago and on August 27, while she was returning from work, he asked her to drop by at his boss’ house. When she refused, he threatened to malign her. The girl got scared and when she went to meet Reddy, who allegedly raped her.
The police immediately sprung into action and arrested Reddy. They also sent the girl for a DNA test, which revealed that the girl was five months pregnant contradictory to her previous statement. The girl went back on her statement and during inquiry, she told the cops that her physical relationship with her 19-year-old boyfriend, Irfan Hussain had got her pregnant.
The second statement
The girl was in the same class as Hussain’s sister and would often go to their house. In her statement, she said, “On June 15, he called me to his house when no one was there. He insisted on getting physical with me although initially I resisted,” she said.
The two then got into a physical relationship.
“In September, Reddy got to know about our relationship and started blackmailing me and forced me into a physical relationship,” the girl said adding that she didn’t mention Hussain’s name in the initial statement, as she wanted to protect him. But after Reddy’s arrest, Hussain started giving the girl a cold shoulder. This, along with the DNA report, prompted the girl to finally confess.
On the basis of this second statement, the Sessions Court approved Reddy’s bail application on Monday. Advocate Prakash Salsingikar, Reddy’s lawyer, said: “While arguing for my client’s bail, we pointed out that he was implicated in the case by the girl who wanted to save her boyfriend who is the father of her unborn child.” The police have arrested Hussain under Protection of Children from Sexual Offenses Act (POCSO) as the girl in question is a minor and he is at present in judicial custody. Both Hemant (under Section 376, 323, 504, 506 of IPC) and Hussain (under section 376 of IPC) have been charge-sheeted.
According to Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act, 2012, any person (including a child) can be prosecuted for engaging in a sexual act with a child irrespective of whether the latter consented.