The one-eyed man who had struck terror into the hearts of parents in the Western suburbs, allegedly sexually abusing more than 20 minor girls until his arrest last year, has been acquitted in the first of the 25 molestation cases against him. The 36-year-old was exonerated after the prosecution failed to present crucial evidence.
Ayaz Mohammad Ali Ansari
mid-day had highlighted how the molester — identified by one damaged, white eye — would allegedly target girls between 7 and 13 years, always using the same modus operandi — he would tell them he knew their father and take them to a secluded area and sexually abuse them.
On Thursday, the first of these cases was being heard at the special Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) court at the Mumbai Sessions Court, when Judge Chanda A Nathani acquitted him. The accused, Ayaz Mohammad Ali Ansari alias Firoze Kaniya had been booked for molesting a 12-year-old girl in Andheri.
The prosecution’s case dates back to February, 2, 2014, when the girl had gone to her father’s shop at 9 pm. He asked her to get some goods from the house because the shop’s stocks were running low. The girl was accosted by Kaniya, who told her he was her uncle and he knew her father.
The prosecution presented that Kaniya had held her hand, showed her a knife and told her to follow him or he would kill her. He took her to a building nearby and asked her to take off her clothes, but when he heard someone approaching, he ran away.
The prosecution examined seven people, including the minor survivor, her father and a witness who had seen the accused leaving the spot. However, the witness could not identify the accused in court.
Speaking to mid-day, advocate Anil Jadhav, who was representing Kaniya, said, “The case had an eyewitness who had said the accused had banged into him while running from the spot and had even said sorry to him.
But the witness didn’t identify the accused in the court. The police also did not recover the knife with which the minor girl was threatened.”