Panchayat members booked for `letting off` rape accused

The woman and her husband are both hearing and speech impaired, the sources said, adding that following the incident the couple approached the police and a complaint of "molestation" was registered.

Last Updated: Mar 05, 2011, 15:56 PM IST

Allahabad: A case has been registered against five persons, including four panchayat members, for
allegedly pressurising a rape victim, who is hearing and speech impaired, not to pursue her police complaint after asking the accused to pay a "compensation" of Rs 2100 to her.

The incident occurred in Sarai Sultan village falling under Bahariya police station of the district, 40 kms from the city, where the dalit woman, an agricultural labourer, was allegedly raped by a local youth while she was working in the fields on Tuesday, police sources said.

The woman and her husband are both hearing and speech impaired, the sources said, adding that following the incident the couple approached the police and a complaint of "molestation" was registered.

However, three days later, the couple were again brought to the police station by some local social activists
who alleged that a day after having visited the police station, the victim and her husband were summoned at a meeting of the village panchayat where the accused was also present.

The activists alleged that at the meeting, the youth "confessed to have committed rape" and the panchayat asked him to pay a "compensation" of Rs 2,100 to the victim and thereafter asked her and her husband to "keep their mouth shut".

An FIR was lodged yesterday on the basis of the fresh complaint though the four village panchayat members as well as the accused youth, named by the social activists in their complaint, have gone missing.

A search was on for them and police were making arrangements for medical examination of the woman.

PTI