Assam police gun down rape accused as he attempts escape from custody

Guwahati: A prime accused in the gang-rape of a minor girl was gunned down by police here while allegedly trying to escape from custody, an official said on Wednesday.

He was being taken to the crime scene for further investigation when the accused reportedly attacked police personnel accompanying him and attempted to flee on Tuesday night, the official claimed.

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Police then opened fire at the man, he said.

The accused was taken to the Gauhati Medical College Hospital (GMCH), where he was declared brought-dead.

GMCH Superintendent Abhijit Sharma said he was brought to the hospital around 1 am, and there were four bullet injuries in his body.

He had no heart beat when he was brought here. We have kept his body in the morgue and will hand it to his family after conducting the post-mortem, Sharma said.

Police said two women personnel were also injured in the attack by the accused, but they were out of danger.

The accused, who was absconding since the mother of the girl filed a complaint with the police on March 8, was arrested on Tuesday from Dampur area in Kamrup district.

The 15-year-old girl was allegedly gang-raped at a hotel in Guwahati by five men, two of whom had assaulted her on an earlier occasion, too, police had said.

As per the complaint lodged by the minor’s mother, two of the five culprits, who had first sexually assaulted the girl on February 16 and shot a video of the act, allegedly threatened to leak the clip if she revealed the matter to anyone.

On February 19, however, the two men, promising to delete the video, met the girl again in another hotel and along with others forced themselves on her.

A search operation is underway to nab the other accused, police added.

Assam has witnessed a spurt in police encounters since Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma assumed office on May 10 last year, as 39 people have been killed and at least 89 injured in such incidents since then.

Sarma had on Tuesday said in the assembly that crime rate decreased in the state following police action on alleged criminals when they attempt to escape from custody or attack personnel.

He asserted there has been a 30-per cent decline in the crime rate, taking into account the number of cases registered in police stations during January-February of 2021 as compared to the same period this year.

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Action has also been initiated against police officers who have acted outside the ambit of law, Sarma added.

Meanwhile, Special DGP G P Singh, said in a tweet on Wednesday: Rape represents regressive mindset of controlling, scarring and destroying a girl/women’s mind and body. Assam Police would use all instruments of law to fight this evil.

As a father and a cop, grateful to @CMOfficeAssam for crystal clear directions to this effect.

Assam Cabinet OKs 2022-23 budget to be presented today

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