Odisha News update

Dancer hired for event gang-raped in Bhubaneswar


BHUBANESWAR: Even as shockwaves created by the Delhi gang rape are yet to abate, a 19-year-old dancer underwent a similar ordeal in Saheed Nagar here on Wednesday night. The incident came to light only after police arrested four men in this connection on Thursday and Friday.

The accused were identified as Jatadhar Sahoo (52), Subrat Kumar Das (29), Biranchi Narayan Dasmohapatra (39) and Sangram keshari Pradhan(28) , all residents of Bhubaneswar. They were produced in a lower court and sent to judicial custody following rejection of their bail plea. Police are on the lookout for another accused in the incident.

Police said Sahoo, who was known to the victim, invited her to Beherasahi to perform in a function. The girl, who hailed from Phulanakhara area on the outskirts of Bhubaneswar, was picked up by Sahoo from Jayadev Vihar around 5 pm and taken to a house in Beherasahi.

His accomplices were already present in the house, where Sahoo was staying as a caretaker. Sahoo was sleeping peacefully in his house after committing the heinous crime when he was nabbed by police.

“Before the girl could sense trouble, the five men locked her inside the house and outraged her modesty,” said assistant commissioner of police (zone-1) Nihar Ranjan Das. Sources said the girl somehow managed to escape from the clutches of the accused at midnight and took shelter near a petrol filling station.

“She approached us on Thursday morning and lodged a complaint, leading to the arrest of the four men on Thursday and Friday,” said Amita Tripathy, inspector in-charge of Mahila police station. “The fifth accused has been identified and would be arrested soon,” Tripathy said.

Police are verifying the criminal antecedents of the accused. While Sahoo was caretaker of the house, Pradhan is a taxi driver. The other three are small-time vendors in the city.

Police investigation revealed the girl had earlier come in contact with Sahoo six months ago at a function in Salepur near Cuttack. Sahoo befriended her and asked her to stay in touch with him for dance programmes. Sahoo invited her for the first time on Wednesday and promised to pay her Rs 5,000 for the function, sources said.

The condition of the girl is fine, the assistant commissioner of police said. “She underwent medical test where it was confirmed that she was raped. Her condition is fine now,” Das said.

Police said the girl, who hails from a poor family, has been sent to her house. Her father passed away recently and she was earning money by dancing in local marriage and social functions to run the family. She has two sisters, one of whom is married.

Courtesy : The Times of India



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