In a distressing incident, the Rajasthan Police have arrested an individual in connection with the alleged rape of a 20-year-old Dalit woman aboard a bus en route from Kanpur to Jaipur, as reported by The Indian Express on Saturday.
The victim was reportedly assaulted by two drivers during the night of December 9 and 10 when she boarded the bus to visit a relative in Jaipur. A first information report (FIR) was filed on December 10 against the accused, Aarif and Lalit, under Section 376D (gangrape) of the Indian Penal Code and relevant sections of the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act.
While Aarif has been apprehended, Lalit is currently on the run. According to Assistant Commissioner of Police Phoolchand Meena, the investigating officer, due to all seats being occupied, the accused instructed the victim to rest in the driver’s cabin.
“Prima facie it appears that both the accused took turns to rape her,” Meena stated. “As one of the duo committed the crime, the other drove the bus. After a while, a passenger went to the driver’s cabin and asked the driver to stop the bus for a toilet break. It was at this point that he spotted the woman and suspected foul play.”
Subsequently, the passengers intervened, leading to a confrontation with both drivers. During the altercation, one of the accused managed to escape. Another passenger, who happened to be a driver, took control of the bus and safely transported the victim to Jaipur.
The charges against the accused include Section 376D of the IPC and provisions of the SC/ST (Prevention of Atrocities) Act. The incident sheds light on the grave issue of women’s safety during travel and the urgent need for preventive measures to be implemented within public transportation systems.