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Hunt on for one more suspect in child rape case

Ashok Kumar
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Massive protests continue for third consecutive day

Frayed tempers:Women activists, protesting against the rape of the five-year-old girl, attempt to cross the barricade outside Congress president Sonia Gandhi’s residence in New Delhi on Sunday.— Photo: V.V. Krishnan
Frayed tempers:Women activists, protesting against the rape of the five-year-old girl, attempt to cross the barricade outside Congress president Sonia Gandhi’s residence in New Delhi on Sunday.— Photo: V.V. Krishnan

In a twist to the brutal rape of the five-year-old girl at Gandhi Nagar here, the Delhi Police on Sunday said they were looking for one more suspect.

Earlier, they denied the role of anyone other than Manoj Sah, who was arrested in Muzaffarpur on Saturday, in the incident. They had even issued a statement on Sunday dismissing as “rumours” reports about the involvement of one more person in the case. But in the evening, a senior police officer conceded that they were looking for one more suspect. Sources said Manoj had told the police that one of his friends was also present in the house and it was his friend who had raped the girl. The police officer said it was being probed whether the second suspect was involved in the rape or helped Manoj flee the Capital.

Meanwhile, widespread protests, mostly by political parties, against the brutal rape continued for the third consecutive day on Sunday. The protesters, apart from slamming the police for delaying registration of the case, sought the removal of Police Commissioner Neeraj Kumar.

Several Aam Aadmi Party volunteers were detained when they broke the barricades and tried to enter Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s official residence at 7 Race Course Road. Bharatiya Janata Party Mahila Morcha activists were detained when they staged a protest outside Congress president Sonia Gandhi’s 10 Janpath residence.

Volunteers of student outfits SFI and AISA also turned out in large numbers outside the Delhi Police headquarters.

At the All-India Institute of Medical Sciences, where the victim is undergoing treatment, a number of protesters turned up to express solidarity with her. AIIMS Medical Superintendent D.K. Sharma said the girl was responding well to the antibiotics and was gradually recovering. “It will take at least two weeks to discharge her,” said Dr. Sharma in a bulletin.

Meanwhile, Manoj, who was brought to Delhi on a transit remand following his arrest from Muzaffarpur in Bihar, was produced at the residence of the duty magistrate and sent to judicial custody till May 4.

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