Ghaziabad police on Friday registered a case against a woman and three accomplices after she allegedly ‘fabricated’ a gang-rape charge over a Rs 53 lakh property dispute earlier this week. The National Commission of Women (NCW), which had taken cognizance of the case and constituted a fact-finding team to probe the case, said on Friday that she and her family members gave contradictory statements.
The police on Thursday held a press conference where they said that the woman’s allegation, that she had been gangraped and assaulted by a group of men two days earlier, before being dumped on the side of the road, was fabricated and part of a conspiracy.
The 36-year-old woman was reportedly found wrapped in a jute bag, with her hands and legs tied, and an iron rod was inserted in her private part.
While the police lodged an FIR when the case was first reported, amid mounting pressure to take action and Delhi Commission for Women (DCW) chief Swati Maliwal drawing connections between the case and the brutal Nirbhaya gang-rape case of 2012, further investigation revealed that several parts of the woman’s story didn’t add up.
The woman’s brother had claimed that she had been abducted on her way back to Delhi after attending his birthday on October 16, raped by five men, and found in Ghaziabad in the early hours of October 18. Police said they found her inside a sack, but the top half of her body was outside, and she was communicating.
She was sent to GTB Hospital, where sources said that she had sustained no internal injuries, though she had some bruises, and that a 5-6 cm foreign object removed from inside her had been sent to the police for analysis, as per Indian Express.
“It was also informed that the foreign object found in the private parts of the woman was not found during primary medical examination in the MMG District Hospital, Ghaziabad, and she was referred to another hospital in Delhi but her relatives took her to the GTB Hospital, Shahdara," the NCW said in a statement. Police said that the woman’s family was strongly opposed to getting a medical check-up done in a Meerut hospital they were referred to by the police and instead took her to GTB.
An NCW official said that “also, the hospital told us that in preliminary medical examination, no semen was found on the victim", as per PTI.
Police have so far detained three men – Azad, Gaurav and Afzal – under Indian Penal Code (IPC) sections pertaining to cheating, forgery and fraudulently using genuine documents. The woman, who has also been booked, has not been detained, with police saying that she is still under medical observation.
The five men who were mentioned as accused and the woman were engaged in a long-term property dispute, as per the police.
“A woman named Sameena gave the property to Azad in 2021 who in turn gave its power of attorney to a man named Deepak Joshi. There was talk about giving this property to the Delhi woman. The case regarding this was going on in the court, police said.
“Two of the men claim it was their ancestral property and they have had it for 40 years. Azad was staying on rent in the property, and one of the men from the other side owed him Rs 2 lakh," Alok Dubey, circle officer, Sihani Gate as quoted in Indian Express. “They claim that Azad signed a document with them under which he was supposed to return the property documents after he was repaid the amount. But it was, in fact, an agreement to give him power of attorney, and the property later came into the possession of the woman.”
During the press conference, when asked if a clean chit will be given to the four persons, Inspector General, Meerut, Praveen Kumar, had said, “We have not got any evidence against them…Prima facie, in this case, no such incident has taken place. So, there is no question of getting evidence."
On the women’s claim that she was kidnapped, the officer had said, “No. She had gone to a designated place at her own will."
Chats analysed by police also revealed that money was paid to individuals to publicise the case. Police said they recovered evidence of payments made via PayTM from Azad, to ensure that news of the “rape” would be widely circulated.
Other discrepancies also emerged. Azad’s mobile phone had been switched off at the same time and location that the woman was supposedly abducted, police said. The accused were also not within Ghaziabad at the time of the incident, but were rather in Delhi, they said. Police also said that the movement of Gaurav’s car GPS showed it had been to the same location where the woman was found “abandoned”.
“The Scorpio car mentioned in the allegations was not involved at any point; the woman had gone home and quietly hid there,” CO Dubey told Indian Express.
(With PTI inputs)
Read all the Latest India News here