Toddler found raped and murdered on Diwali night near Pune chawl
The accused kidnapped the two-and-a-half-year-old, asleep next to her mum in their room, and took her to an abandoned area nearby
This Diwali, this family is in mourning, because the light of their lives has been snuffed out, brutally. The Sinhagad police are probing the rape and murder of a two-and-a-half-year-old, after her body was found 200 metres from her home in Dhayari, Wadgaon Budruk.
The incident took place on Saturday night, when the family was asleep in their chawl room. They had closed only the outer (netted) door to let the breeze in, through which the accused is suspected to have entered and kidnapped the toddler sleeping next to her mother.
A frantic search
The victim's mother approached the police around 11.45 pm on waking up and finding her daughter missing. The police found the little one's body in an abandoned area near the chawl after a six-hour search.
The family hails from Marathwada and had come to Pune city to escape the drought. The victim's father works as a waiter, while mother delivers cut vegetables to houses in a posh society.
"She was our ray of sunshine; we'd had her after years of marriage. We had moved to Pune to give her a better education and earn well," said her inconsolable mother. "Saturday night, we burst crackers and went to sleep around 10 pm.
We were going to travel to our hometown the next morning to celebrate Diwali. Around 11.45 pm, I woke up and saw that she wasn't next to me. I immediately woke up my husband and alerted the neighbours.
"I want her back... why her? She was barely three, she had just started speaking… how could someone be so brutal and inhuman to do this to her?"
Sub-inspector Dhulaji Kolape, who is investigating the case, said, "After getting the complaint, we went to the spot and searched the area. Her body was found in Prayoja city project area. We rushed her to hospital, but she was declared dead. Post-mortem revealed that she had been sexually abused and strangulated. We have detained a few people and are probing further."
A case has been registered under sections 363 (kidnapping) and 302 (murder) of the Indian Penal Code and under relevant sections of the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act.
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