Acting on a complaint by citizens from Kalina, commissioner of police (CP) Arup Patnaik, has taken serious note of the lapses by the investigating officer in registering a compelling case against an alleged serial child molester. 36 days after the case was registered at Vakola police station, the CP yesterday suspended investigating officer (IO) Sandeep Dhable for a shoddy probe, and passed an order to extern the accused from the city.
On April 29, Vakola police had arrested 25-year-old BMC contract cleaner Raju Jadhav for molesting a 10-year-old girl who was on her way to a grocery store. On hearing her screams for help, locals had then nabbed Jadhav and handed him over to the cops.
MiD DAY had reported about the incident (‘BMC contract cleaner turns out to be serial child molester, May 1) where it was brought to light that local residents were living in fear of the alleged habitual offender, as he had molested seven young girls earlier. After his arrest, Jadhav was produced in a local court and was released on bail on a surety of Rs 5,000 the next day, as the section applied by the IO was lenient.
Some locals from Kalina who were riled with the thought of a serial molester roaming in their neighbourhood and unhappy with police investigations, approached Patnaik with their grievances. “I had sent a letter to the commissioner on May 2, signed by 15 other local residents,” said Savio Alves, resident of Kalina.
“Investigations had revealed that Jadhav had allegedly molested eight girls in Kalina, Santacruz (East). Despite several complaints against Jadhav, the investigating officer had not bothered to register the complaints of other locals,” said a senior police officer, on condition of anonymity.
Joint commissioner of police (law and order) Rajneesh Seth said, “The investigating officer should have registered seven to eight complaints in the matter, but he had booked the accused only under one case. After a departmental inquiry against the said officer it was concluded that he was at fault, following which the action has been taken.”
“We are very thankful to the commissioner that he responded to our grievances,” added Alves.