A disturbing case of a sexual predator has surfaced, with thearrest of 45-year-old cable operator in the city. The Cantonment police arrested Zahir Baig, a resident of Ganesh Peth, for allegedly raping a physically handicapped 30-year-old woman repeatedly four years ago, and filming himself indulging in the acts. He then allegedly used the clips captured with his camcorder to blackmail the woman into submission ever so often, by telling her that he would circulate the videos in the area and defame her. The accused however did not expect the law to catch up with him when the victim moved away from the area, but it did.
According to the police, a woman residing in the same locality was given a CD by a concerned source, and recognised the woman being sexually assaulted in a clip. She also realised that the woman was being forced into the act, and managed to get in touch with the woman, who is presently married and stays elsewhere in the city.
The victim, now 34-years-old, was hesitant at first, but she finally narrated her nightmarish experiences after some counselling.
The victim said on condition of anonymity, “I was acquainted with the suspect briefly, as we were staying in the same area. One day four years ago, the suspect called me to his house when his wife was not around and requested me to wash the utensils. When I entered his house, he suddenly jumped on me and molested me. He then said that he had filmed the entire act on his camcorder. He then used to blackmail me, and raped me on several occasions.”
According to the police, Baig lives with his third and fourth wives. His two other wives had died some time ago. “Recently, a woman from the locality got a CD containing some obscene act. While watching the clip, she recognised the woman who was being subjected to sexual assault and decided to speak to her,” said Police Inspector Sushma Chavan of the Cantonment police station.
While lodging her complaint, the victim said that she was afraid to do so earlier as she hailed from a poor family. “On the basis of the complaint and the video clips, we raided the houses of the suspect and arrested him. Since the crime occurred in Faraskhana police station jurisdiction, we have registered a case and transferred it to them. The Faraskhana station would now be investigating the case.
While making the arrest, the police seized a CPU, camcorders, CDs, memory cards and mobile phones. A technical team will be scanning the hard drive and memory cards for other objectionable material.
According to a police officer, the suspect has clips of himself during a visit to Mumbai. He has also shot several clips of couples at various beaches and public places, while they were sharing an intimate moment.
The police are also investigating whether his wives are involved. Baig has been arrested under section namely Section 376 (rape) and 67(A) of the Information Act (Publishing of information, which is obscene in electronic form).
I was acquainted with the suspect briefly, as we were staying in the same area. One day four years ago, the suspect called me to his house when his wife was not around and requested me to wash the utensils. When I entered his house, he suddenly jumped on me and molested me. He then said that he had filmed the entire act on his camcorder. He then used to blackmail me, and raped me on several occasions.