While the nine-year-old survivor was undergoing treatment, her younger sister helped police make a sketch of one of the accused, landing them in the police net
Two people accused of kidnapping and raping a nine-year-old girl on Friday in Nahur were arrested yesterday. The cops got their first breakthrough after the survivor’s five-year-old sister helped them make a sketch of one of the accused.
Navghar police with the two accused. Pic/Rajesh Gupta
According to the police, the accused have been identified as Prakash Phillip Banbees (33) and Santosh Bharat Poojari (24), who rented an auto rickshaw from their friend. Once the sister trusted the police, she told them that it wasn’t a BMC pick-up van but an auto rickshaw.
“When they saw the girl playing with her siblings in Bhandup, they picked her up on the pretext of giving her vada pav and took her to the bushes near Nahur station. The investigation has revealed that Banbees raped her,” said a police official. The survivor is out of danger but is still undergoing treatment at a local hospital.
The cops alleged that they were clueless about the accused since the survivor was unconscious. “It was her five-year-old sister who told her mother that her elder sister had been kidnapped. So we hoped that she could give some details to help locate the absconders by the time the survivor gained consciousness,” added the officer.
However, after gaining her trust, the police got the sister to spill the beans. “She said one of the accused (Poojari) had a broken front tooth. Based on that, we made his sketch and started looking for him near Sonapur area,” said the officer. “She also said they were alcoholic and we suspected that the accused could be from Sonapur,” said an officer.
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With the help of the sketch, the police got a tip-off by one of the locals and laid a trap near Poojari’s residence. They first arrested him and then Banbees. Banbees was booked under IPC sections 376 (rape) and 363 (kidnapping) while Poojari was booked for being his accomplice under section 34.
Both of them were also charged under relevant sections of the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act (POCSO) 2012. “Banbees was earlier convicted for seven years in a 2006 murder case. He had even tried to kill the nine-year-old after raping her. But they mistook her unconsciousness for death and left her at the spot,” said the officer.