Ahmedabad: In a major embarrassment to Gujarat government, the state information department revealed the identity of a rape victim by releasing her photograph.
The seven-year-old girl was raped last week in Jamnagar.
After the goof up by its information department, the government has sought an explanation from the concerned officer in Jamnagar.
The minor girl was lured and allegedly raped by her distant relative, Rama Kana Chauhan (25 yrs), in his autorickshaw on last Friday. He was arrested by police after the victim`s parents lodged a complaint in this regard.
On Sunday, minister of state for education, women and child welfare Vasu Trivedi paid a visit to the Civil Hospital in Jamnagar, where the victim is being treated.
Following the minister`s visit, the information department in Jamnagar issued a press release and photographs giving details of her visit to the hospital.
Four, out of five, photographs of the minister`s visit to the hospital clearly showed victim lying in bed in the foreground while minister was seen interacting with family members.
According to the Supreme Court`s guidelines, nothing which reveals the identity of a rape victim can be published or released and under section 228(A) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC), even naming a rape victim is a punishable offence.
State Information Department joint director Arvind Patel said, "The department has sought an explanation from the head of the Jamnagar division and also asked to submit a written clarification within two days."
The government has not yet taken any action against the erring officers in Jamnagar division, he said.
Minister Vasu Trivedi could not be contacted for comments on the issue.