To Make Mill Premises Safe, Judge Directs Pruning Of Undergrowth, Wall Construction Between Compound & Rly Tracks
Mumbai: The four men arrested for allegedly gangraping a photojournalist in the Shakti Mills compound on August 22 were on Thursday remanded in judicial custody till September 19. They will be subjected to an identification parade on Friday at Arthur Road jail. In a bid to tighten security in the city, the police also hinted that they would rope in BMC officials to survey isolated spots that are increasingly becoming hotspots for crimes.
Earlier, a report compiled by the police stated that the city had 272 such desolate spots; but not convinced by the high number mentioned by the police stations, senior officers want BMC officials to work with them to confirm the places and make them secure. The plan is to issue notices to the owners of those establishments, asking them to either maintain proper exit and entrance points of the premises or put security system in place.
The abandoned Shakti Mills compound, which had become a den for drug-addicts and criminals, was the spot chosen by the five accused, Salim Ansari, Qasim Shaikh, Vijay Jadhav, Siraj Khan and a juvenile, to allegedly brutalize several women besides the photojournalist. Three among the five, along with a minor and absconding accused Ashfaque Shaikh, have also been booked for the gangrape of a callcentre employee on July 31. “In the July 31 case, the accused are likely to be booked for robbery as well as they stole the mobile of the survivor’s boyfriend, now husband,” said the police.
After the alleged attack on the photojournalist, teams from central forensic science laboratory of Delhi and Gujarat collected evidence from the crime scene at the mill compound. The panel included two psychiatrists who conducted a layered voice analysis (LVA) on the accused; the technique is designed for truth verification and deceit detection. The police are have also sought call data records of three unknown numbers retrieved from the cellphones of the five accused to find out if any one of them belonged to the juvenile whose phone could not be retrieved.
A crime branch team that went to Mumbra on Thursday to nab Ashfaque returned empty handed; besides, three teams have already been searching for him. In a bid to make him surrender, the police have detained Ashfaque’s wife since Wednesday. “They are making his wife call on his mobile but he is not taking her calls,” said a relative of Ashfaque, waiting outside the N M Joshi Marg police station.
The Times of India, September 6, 2013