The State crime branch police, which probed into the sensational Pipili gang rape and murder case and subsequently expressed its inability to substantiate the allegation of rape while filing the charge sheet, perhaps pre-empted to overlook the allegation of rape.

Had that not been the case, why then the police had not made any requisitions before the treating doctors to medically examine whether the 19-year-old girl was sexually assaulted or not? Counsels for different witnesses appearing before the Justice P.K. Mohanty Commission of Enquiry are now harping on this point and on Thursday the crime branch investigation officer (IO) Ramesh Chandra Sethy faced this uncomfortable question.

While the IO’s cross-examination remained inconclusive on the day, Mr. Sethy tried to pass on the buck on the contentious issue by saying that he did only what he was asked to do by his supervising officer.

To continue

Mr. Sethy appeared before the Commission for the first time on the day and recorded his statements during the ‘chief examination’ and was then subjected to cross examination.

His cross examination shall again be held on June 7 and 10, sources said.

Earlier, Mr. Sethy told the Commission that the crime branch filed four charge sheets in the case before the trial court of Pipili JMFC. Besides the key accused Prashant Pradhan, police had submitted charge sheet against three other accused, a dismissed police inspector and three other doctors in the case.

While only four accused were arrested, the police have not arrested the tainted police officer and the three doctors, who are booked under charges of SC and ST (Prevention of Atrocities) Act.

The key accused is booked under murder charge and he is also warranted trial in the court of law for charges under Section 341 (wrongful restraint), 354 (assault to outrage the modesty of a woman), 506 (criminal intimidation) and 34 (common intention) of IPC.

Prashant’s younger brother Sukanta and two of their associates are also facing the similar charges, barring the murder charge.

It may be recalled here that the Dalit girl of Arjungoda village of Pipili was allegedly gang raped and an attempt was made on her life on November 29, 2011. After battling for more than six months in coma stage, the victim died in June 2012.