MUMBAI: There is massive anger in north Maharashtra’s Jalgaon over the murder and alleged rape of four young siblings two girls aged 13 and 6 years and two boys aged 11 and 8 years old. The children, who belonged to a tribal community, were allegedly hacked to death with an axe by unidentified accused last Thursday, the police said.
Four days after the incident, the police are yet to make any arrests. However, they have added rape charges to the murder case, based on circumstantial and scientific evidence, sources said. “We are verifying the evidence. Our investigation is progressing well. We should be able to make arrests soon,” Inspector General of Police Pratap Dighavkar told reporters when asked why there were no arrests so far.
The police have added charges of rape and sexual assault to their FIR against unnamed suspects after four siblings were found murdered in their home in Jalgaon on Friday.
“We have added Section 376 of the Indian Penal Code and sections of the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act to the FIR after investigation and inquiries revealed sexual assault,” said Pravin Mundhe, Superintendent of Police, Jalgaon.
The deceased two girls aged 12 and three years and two boys aged 11 and eight years were killed with an axe by unknown persons on Thursday night in Raver taluka, hours after their parents and older brother had left for their native village in Madhya Pradesh to attend the funeral of a family member.
The family, who belongs to the Bhil tribe, had moved to the village from Madhya Pradesh eight years ago and had been staying on and cultivating their landlord’s banana farm.
A Special Investigation Team probing the crime had detained three people, including a minor, on Friday. The police have registered cases under sections of the POCSO (Protection of Children from Sexual Offences) Act and listed charges including rape and murder.
State Home Minister Anil Deshmukh, who visited Jalgaon on Saturday, had told reporters that the “probe is moving in a positive direction and arrests will be made soon.” The children were reportedly murdered on the night of October 15, and were found lying in a pool of blood inside a house at a farm in a village in Raver taluka, some 66 km from the district headquarters of Jalgaon.
The police rushed to the spot after the house owner reached the next morning and found the bodies. According to the police, the children’s parents had gone with their oldest son to attend rituals after the death of a relative. The children were left in the care of an acquaintance.
“All four were very young and that’s why he had asked my friends to look after them while we were away. But, they only did this heinous act,” the victims’ brother said.
Bureau Report with agency Inputs).