Surat rape-murder case: Probe confirms murder of victim’s mother, human trafficking not ruled out; top developments

By: | Updated: April 24, 2018 10:58 AM

Surat rape-murder case: The alleged rape and murder case of an 11-year-old girl in Surat has evoked massive outrage. The development came close on the heels of the Kathua and Unnao cases that shocked the nation and triggered nationwide protests as well as a political slugfest.

kathua, unnao casesAfter days of struggling to ascertain the identity of the victim and track the accused, the probe by the Gujarat police now reveals that along with the the girl, her mother was also killed by the main accused.

Surat rape-murder case: The alleged rape and murder case of an 11-year-old girl in Surat has evoked massive outrage. The development came close on the heels of the Kathua and Unnao cases that shocked the nation and triggered nationwide protests as well as a political slugfest. The news of the death and rape of the Surat girl came right in the thick of the controversies that the Unnao and Kathua cases generated.

After days of struggling to ascertain the identity of the victim and track the accused, the probe by the Gujarat police now reveals that along with the the girl, her mother was also killed by the main accused. This, after DNA sample of the victim was matched with that of a woman whose body was found in another area in Surat. The DNA reports confirmed that the child victim was the daughter of the woman.

Even as the reports of rape are pouring, the Narendra Modi government had on Saturday to provide stringent punishment, including the death penalty, for those convicted of rape of girls below 12 years. It has been learnt that new fast-track courts would be set up to deal with such cases. Apart from this, police stations and hospitals will be given forensic kits for rape cases.

According to the Criminal Law Amendment Ordinance, there will be strict punishment for rapists. The maximum punishment for raping girls under 12 years will be death sentence. The minimum punishment in case of rape of women has been increased from the rigorous imprisonment of seven years to 10 years. This, however, is extendable to life imprisonment.

Here are latest developments in Surat rape-murder case

The body of the girl, found from near a playground in Pandesara area of the city earlier this month. It was found that the body had 86 injury marks. A doctor had said that the girl, who was around 9 to 11 years of age, was possibly raped before she was killed.

A body of a woman was also found in another area in Surat. After the investigation, DNA test was conducted on the girl and the woman. The results show that they are mother and daughter. However, their identities are yet to be ascertained by police.

Police had arrested a man from Ganganagar in Sawai Madhopur district of Rajasthan for allegedly raping the girl and killing her and her mother. The accused is identified as Harsh Sahay Gurjar. According to reports, the accused had first killed the woman and then her daughter as the latter was an eyewitness to the killing of her mother.

“The DNA test has confirmed that the minor girl was the daughter of that woman. As of now, we only know that both the mother-daughter duo were brought to Surat by Gurjar from Rajasthan. But, it is yet not clear where exactly they hail from. We are yet to identify them,” Surat Police Commissioner Satish Sharma was quoted as saying.

During interrogation, Gurjar confessed to having killed the girl and her mother, said Sharma. The man who handed over both the woman and her daughter to Gurjar had demanded Rs 35,000 for them, the police commissioner said.

The Surat police commissioner Satish Sharma said, “The woman was killed on March 26 and since then, the girl was staying at the house of Gujjar. We have found that the minor was a healthy child and was taken care of by Gujjar’s family. He told us that the motive behind killing her mother was that she was forcing him to stay with her. After the murder, he kept her daughter at his house. But when the girl started talking about her mother to family members, she was also murdered.”

Surat Police is also looking into the human trafficking angle. With the help of CCTV footage of Pandesara area, police had also traced the black car which was allegedly used to dump the bodies of the two victims.

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