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BHUBANESWAR: A day after taking up investigation into the alleged gang-rape of a minor girl inside Biramitrapur police station in Sundargarh district recently, the state Crime Branch arrested the police station’s former inspector-in-charge (IIC) Ananda Majhi on Wednesday.
Majhi, who had allegedly subjected the 13-year-old tribal girl to sexual assault in police station and forced her to undergo abortion, reportedly holed up in a mango orchard in Angul district.
Majhi’s arrest came hours after the state director general of police Abhay dismissed the former from the service and tendered apology to the rape survivor for the ‘tainted’ cop’s shameful misconduct. “I am glad that the Crime Branch swiftly arrested the dismissed IIC, whose shameful conduct caused embarrassment for us. Our apologies to the rape survivor,” Abhay said.
Crime Branch said it was a tough task to arrest Majhi, who was on the run since the registration of the alleged gang-rape case against him and five other persons on June 22. “He used his police brain to evade arrest. But we outwitted him. He was traced to a mango forest in Handapa police area in Angul district,” a Crime Branch officer said. The officer, however, did not disclose much about their operation of tracing the elusive Majhi.
Additional director general of police (Crime Branch) Soumendra Priyadarshi said Majhi was the main accused in the case. “We will bring him on remand for questioning, if required. Other accused involved in the case will also be arrested,” Priyadarshi said.
Majhi, another unidentified officer of Biramitrapur police station, the rape survivor’s step father and two local youth were accused of gang-raping the 13-year-old tribal girl for several weeks between March and June. Case was also registered against a government doctor for allegedly abetting the alleged offence and conducting forceful abortion of the girl’s foetus.
The matter came to the light after the minor, who was seen crying outside the police station a few days ago, was rescued by a local NGO and later handed over to the child welfare committee (CWC) in Sundargarh. The girl told the CWC that she had come to Biramitrapur to watch a local fair a few days before lockdown in March. While she was waiting to catch an auto-rickshaw to return her home, which was around 22 km from the fair site, the Biramitrapur police patrolling van spotted her and took her to the police station where Majhi allegedly raped her. She alleged that the local police dropped her in her village. But Majhi often allegedly called her to the police station and sexually assaulted her.
A dismissed constable was arrested in Puri in December last year for allegedly gang-raping a woman in police colony while an assistant-sub inspector (ASI) was arrested for allegedly raping a woman in Balanga area in Puri in January this year. A few cops were suspended in Bhubaneswar on charges of misconduct to women in recent past.
(The victim’s identity has not been revealed to protect her privacy as per Supreme Court directives on cases related to sexual assault)

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As many as 4,938 police personnel in Maharashtra have tested positive for coronavirus so far and 60 of them have succumbed to the viral infection, Home Minister Anil Deshmukh said on Wednesday.

He said 38 of the 60 deceased were from the Mumbai Police force.

As many as 3,813 of the 4,938 infected police personnel have recovered from Covid-19 disease while over 1,000 others are currently under treatment, the home minister said in a statement.

The number of the offences registered under section 188 (Disobedience to order duly promulgated by public servant) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) has risen to 1,39,702 since the lockdown came into force, it said.

A total of 29,298 arrests were made for violation of the lockdown norms and 85,780 vehicles impounded.

There have been 290 instances of assaults on policemen and 860 arrests were made, Deshmukh said.

The police department has so far issued 5,36,324 passes for essential services during the lockdown period, the home minister said, adding that Rs 9,52,52,661 has been collected in fines from violators.

Police helpline number 100 has received 1,05,269 calls related to COVID, the statement said.

Altogether 6,16,899 people have been quarantined in the state while 756 of them have been found violating the quarantine norms.

Deshmukh said the state government has been running 10 relief camps where migrant labourers have been provided shelter with food and other necessities.

A total of 1,335 offences have been registered for illegal transport.

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The much-awaited expansion of the cabinet in Madhya Pradesh will take place on Thursday and some of the former Congress MLAs who joined the BJP in March are likely to be rewarded with ministerial berths.

Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan on Wednesday confirmed that he will expand his team on Thursday and made a statement that reflected difficulties he has been facing in undertaking the exercise given the backdrop in which he assumed office more than three months ago.

Chouhan flew to New Delhi on Sunday to hold consultations with the central BJP leadership over the much- talked about cabinet expansion.

Talking to reporters on the sidelines of a programme on Wednesday, Chouhan said, “The governor will take oath today. The (new) cabinet members will take oath tomorrow (Thursday).”

He, however, did not put a number to the new ministers who will take oath.

Later in the day, Uttar Pradesh Governor Anandiben Patel took oath as governor of Madhya Pradesh at a ceremony at Raj Bhavan. Patel has been given the additional charge of MP in view of incumbent Lalji Tandon’s hospitalisation.

Asked about the delay in cabinet expansion, Chouhan avoided a direct reply and turned to mythology to explain the situation.

“Only ‘amrit’ (elixir) comes out of ‘manthan’ (churning), vish (poison) is consumed by (Lord) Shiva,” the 61-year-old BJP leader said without elaborating, but indicating the difficult task before him.

Around 20 to 25 new members, including some former Congress MLAs who had joined the BJP in March, are likely to be inducted into the cabinet, sources in the BJP earlier said.

Chouhan took oath as chief minister for a record fourth term on March 23, after Kamal Nath resigned from the top post following rebellion by nearly two dozen MLAs of the Congress.

Most of the rebels were considered close to former Union minister Jyotiraditya Scindia, who himself quit the Congress and joined the BJP more than three months ago.

The initial ‘mini’ expansion of the Chouhan cabinet took place on April 21 with the induction of five ministers, including two former Congress MLAs.

Asked about Chouhan’s announcement of cabinet expansion, Nath told reporters, “This is for the first time in the history of the country when the cabinet expansion is taking place after such a long time.

“Only time will tell what was the reason for this delay and what will be its results.”

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The CB-CID on Wednesday arrested a sub-inspector of Tuticorin police along with booking six people on murder charges in connection with the custodial death of father-son duo Jayaraj and Beniks in Tamil Nadu.

SI Raghu Ganesh was arrested by the CB-CID officials on Wednesday. (Photo: India Today)

More than a week after P Jayaraj and his son J Beniks were brutally tortured in police custody and died as a result of their injuries, the CB-CID has finally registered murder cases against officers of the Sathankulam police station and arrested one of the accused.

The CB-CID on Wednesday arrested a sub-inspector of police along with booking six people on murder charges in connection with the death of father-son duo Jayaraj and Beniks, allegedly tortured to death at the Sathankulam police station in the southern district of Tuticorin in Tamil Nadu.

The FIRs filed in the case were altered to include murder charges against two SIs — Raghu Ganesh and Balakrishnan — along with two constables and two members of Friends of Police, CB-CID sources said. Both the sub-inspectors have been charged Section 302 (punishment for murder) of the Indian Penal Code.

SI Raghu Ganesh was arrested and remanded by the CB-CID officials, who took over the probe into the case which has triggered a nation-wide outrage.

On Tuesday, the Madurai bench of the Madras High Court said that based on the postmortem report of a father-son duo, there was prima-facie evidence to register a murder charge against the Sathankulam cops.

On Wednesday, the CB-CID took charge of the investigation in the case. The CB-CID sent out 12 teams for a thorough investigation in the case to the Sathankulam Police Station, Kovilpatti sub-jail as well as Jayaraj and Beniks’ house and their shop.

Statements were recorded and evidence was gathered by the teams based on which the murder charges were filed.

P Jayaraj and his son Bennicks, arrested for ‘violating’ lockdown norms over business hours of their cellphone shop, died at a hospital in Kovilpatti on June 23, with the relatives alleging that they were severely thrashed at the Sathankulam police station by the personnel earlier.

The incident had triggered a nationwide furore, leading to the suspension of five policemen, including an inspector and two Sub-Inspectors. The former SP is on compulsory wait.

The Madras High Court had directed a CB-CID probe into the matter although the state government had transferred the case to the CBI.

The next hearing of the case is tomorrow i.e. July 2. has plenty of useful resources that can help you better understand the coronavirus pandemic and protect yourself. Read our comprehensive guide (with information on how the virus spreads, precautions and symptoms), watch an expert debunk myths, and access our dedicated coronavirus page.
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