Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Bangalore, July 29:
Two more people have been arrested in the alleged rape of the six-year-old Odisha girl in a classroom in Bangalore’s Vibgyor school.
Two gymnastics instructors were arrested today and are being questioned, sources said.
Last week, the school’s skating instructor, Mustafa, was arrested.
“We have arrested the two culprits – Lalgiri, 21, and Wasim Pasha, 28 – working as gymnastic coaches in Vibgyor High school, on the basis of vital information the first accused (Mustafa) gave during interrogation, as well as investigation by the special team set up for the case,” Bangalore Police Commissioner M.N. Reddi told reporters.
Mustafa alias Munna, 30, was arrested July 20 and sent to judicial custody till Aug 2. A mobile and a laptop containing videos of children being raped were seized from him.
Lalgiri and Pasha were arrested under Section 376D of the Indian Penal Code – which deals with taking advantage of a person through a position of authority – and under the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act.
They were sent to 14-day judicial remand by a local magistrate.
“During preliminary investigation and interrogation, Pasha and Lalgiri admitted to have committed the heinous crime July 3 in the school premises, which has turned out to be a case of gang-rape,” Reddi said.
Lalgiri hails from Nepal, while Pasha is a native of Gulbarga in the state’s northern region, about 650 km from Bangalore.
Twist in the tale
In a twist to the sensational case, Police Commissioner Reddi ruled out Mustafa’s direct involvement in the actual crime on the basis of interrogation of the student and investigation of circumstantial evidence, including footage from CCTV cameras in the school premises.
“The child identified the main culprits and the CCTV footage shows them (Lalgiri and Pasha) forcing her to stay back for committing the crime, after all other students left the gym classroom,” Reddi asserted.
Police registered another case against Mustafa, who belatedly admitted to have sexually assaulted another minor in a school he was working in two years ago.
“The case involving the sexual assault on the minor has been solved to the extent of identifying the culprits. We will intensify the investigation to find out the complicity of the school management, which hushed up the incident and failed to inform either the girl’s parents or lodge a complaint against the accused with local police,” Reddi added.
The school, which remained shut since July 17 when hundreds of parents staged protests, re-opened Monday with new security measures to ensure the safety of students.
(with inputs from IANS)