No police case even after victim's transfer to short stay home; cops say shelter not sharing details
A Minor rape victim's mother believes a ghost violated her daughter. No police complaint has been lodged so far, even though it has been nearly a month since the girl was referred to a short stay home.
The 15-year-old physically handicapped girl delivered prematurely on Monday at the Yashwantrao Chavan Memorial Hospital (YCMH). The girl was transferred to the short stay home on January 18. On January 31, MiD DAY carried a report on child rights activists suspecting a nexus between adoption centres and short stay homes after members of the Child Welfare Committee (CWC) found the girl being looked after by a caretaker of SOFOSH (Society of Friends of Sassoon Hospital).
CWC members had at the time demanded to know whether a police case had been lodged. According to a medical officer who was present when the girl was admitted to YCMH on Saturday, a medico-legal case was filed after doctors suspected her to be a minor rape victim. After doctors made enquiries with the teenager, they informed the police about the case.
Police Inspector Mohan Vidhate from the Bhosari police station said the girl was brought to the short stay home a month ago. "No case was registered as authorities at the short stay home in Moshi have declined to share details about her parents to us. The girl, too, is reluctant to share any details. So we are unable to register a rape case in this connection," Vidhate said.
Anita Vipat, a Child Welfare Committee member, had sought an explanation from the short stay home on why no police case had been registered. "The short stay home has the victim's address as the mother of victim had left her there, but it seems both mother and child do not want to share information about the assault on her," she said.
Dereliction of duty
Social worker Anjali Pawar, who was present at the general hospital when the victim's mother told the District Women and Child Development (DWCD) Officer a ghost had raped the teenaged girl, expressed displeasure over the fact that authorities at the institute, CWC members and DWCD Officer Suvarna Pawar had not registered a police complaint against an unknown person for the offence.
"The authorities at the institute where the girl was admitted by her mother and the Child Welfare Committee members have failed to perform their duty of giving protection and care to this girl. I am sure after the delivery, the girl will be sent back to her home and the question who abused her will remain unanswered forever," Pawar said. "Do all of them believe that the girl indeed was raped by a ghost? All these responsible authorities are denying justice to the rape victim and are unknowingly supporting her abuser."