Other States

Murthal gang-rape complainant gets threat call

Several vehicles were torched, passengers were robbed and women were allegedly raped by rioters at Murthal on National Highway-1 on the night of February 21. —File Photo  

Bobby Joshi, the complainant in the Murthal gang-rape case, has alleged that he received a call threatening him of dire consequences for “speaking too much” on the matter.

It was following a complaint by Mr. Joshi, a resident of Patparganj in Delhi, that an FIR was registered alleging gang-rapes in Murthal during the Jat agitation in February.

Speaking to The Hindu from Ludhiana, Mr. Joshi (40), who runs a tour and travels business, said he had received a phone call at his Patparganj residence four-five days ago warning him of serious consequences for speaking too much on the case. He reported the matter to Inspector General (South Haryana) Mamta Singh, who is heading a Special Investigation Team formed to probe the allegations.

Ms. Singh said Mr. Joshi had referred to the threat call during a conversation two days ago. “I had gone to his Patparganj residence in connection with the investigation when he told me about the threat call. I advised him to immediately file a police complaint, which we are yet to receive. Still we have written to the Deputy Commissioner of Police concerned in Delhi to provide protection to him and also deputed two policemen from Haryana Police for his protection. The two will accompany him wherever he goes,” said Ms. Singh.

Haryana had witnessed large-scale violence during the Jat agitation over reservation earlier this year. Several vehicles were torched, passengers were robbed and women were allegedly raped by the rioters in Murthal on National Highway-1 on the night of February 21. The matter came to light after a section of media carried reports with accounts of eye-witnesses and the Punjab and Haryana High Court took suo motu cognisance of the matter. Initially, the Haryana government told the court that no incident of rape had happened, but later an FIR was registered based on the complaint of Mr. Joshi, who was travelling on National Highway-1 on the fateful night.

In his complaint, Mr. Joshi had alleged that he had seen some rogue elements creating ruckus and misbehaving with women near Sukhdev Dhaba in Murthal. He claimed that he himself was held up by the rioters.

Earlier this week, the Haryana Police told the court that a gang-rape section was added to the FIR after they received two anonymous letters alleging sexual assaults.

The first letter, posted from Mathura Road, Faridabad, revealed that the victim, a final-year degree student, was allegedly gang-raped while she was returning home with her father from her college hostel. Another letter, purportedly written by an NRI woman and posted on a social networking site, was handed over to the police by a news channel.

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Printable version | Oct 25, 2021 7:14:39 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/murthal-gangrape-complainant-gets-threat-call/article8481530.ece

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