Chennai: In a shocking and horrific incident, more than 20 men, including security guards, lift operators, electricians and plumbers at an apartment complex in the city, sexually assaulted a 12-year-old girl with hearing disorder, for more than seven months.
Police sources on Tuesday said 17 people were arrested for sexually abusing the minor girl when the incident came to light on Monday evening after the girl's elder sister found a cut mark in her neck following which the victim narrated her seven-month-long ordeal.
Acting on a complaint from the girl's parents, who were informed by the elder sister, the Aynavaram All Women Police Station registered cases under the provisions of Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act and also under various sections of the IPC, including attempt to murder, and arrested 17 people in this
What was even more shocking was that many of the culprits, who have committed the inhuman and barbaric act, were above 40-50 years of age .While six people were arrested late last evening, 11 others were arrested today, police said.
Seven other suspects, who were said to have abetted the crime, were being interrogated.All the arrested were produced before a Mahila Court and remanded in judicial custody. They were later lodged in Puzhal Central prison.
The culprits sedated the girl with injections containing drugs, administered soft drinks mixed with sedatives and sexually assaulted her and even videographed it.
They repeatedly exploited her by threatening her that they would release the videos.They had also attempted to murder her as the cut marks in the neck revealed.
The girl told the police that Ravikumar (66), a lift operator in the 300-unit apartment complex was the first to sexually assault her in January this year when he accosted her immediately after she arrived from the school.
A couple of days later, he brought two others, who too sexually assaulted her and videographed themselves the horrific incident of raping her.
Soon others joined by taking the seventh standard girl student to secluded places in the apartment complex like basement, washrooms, terrace and the gym, where Ravi and his accomplices repeatedly raped her.
Since several of the flats in the complex remained unoccupied the culprits had a free hand in committing the heinous act and the incident went unnoticed.
All the arrested were said to be employees of a security firm located in the complex. Even the security guard did not spare the minor girl.
The culprits had a free run as the girl's father was away at work and used to come home late in the night. Her mother, a housewife, did not suspect anything amiss when the girl came home late from school thinking that she was playing with her friends.
After she narrated her ordeal to her elder sister, who was studying outside the State and came home for a brief holiday, the girl was taken to Kilpauk Medical College and Hospital where medical tests revealed that she was raped by several men.
A Mahila court recorded the girl's statement following which 17 people were arrested under the provisions of POCSO Act.Police have seized several syringes and empty soft drink bottles from the complex and sent them to forensics laboratory to determine the nature of sedatives used by them.
Several condoms were also seized and sent to laboratory tests.Those arrested were security guards Murugesh (54), Palani (40), Abhiskeh (23), Sugumaran (60), Prakash (58) and Umapathy (42), lift operators Ravikumar, Paramasivam (60), Deenadayalan (50), Srinivasan (45) and Babu (36), besides plumbers Jaiganesh (23), Raja (32), Surya (23), Suresh (32), electricians Jayaraman (26), housekeeping staff Rajasekar (40) and gardner Gunasekar (55).(UNI)