Mumbai: A Maharashtra Navnirman Sena (MNS) activist in Vikhroli was arrested on charges of raping a minor. The victim was reported pregnant during medical test.
The accused, identified as Karim Bhudhan Momin (35), was arrested after Home Minister R R Patil’s intervention.
Momin’s sisters Nasima and Saro were also booked for threatening the 16-year-old victim. According to the victim, Momin’s kin had forced her for abortion and offered her money to forget the rape.
Momin, a resident of Ghatkopar is married and has an 18-year-old son. His son runs a chicken shop in Ghatkopar and is also an activist of MNS’s Vahtuk Sena.
The victim was employed at the Sanghani Naka office of the MNS Vahtuk Sena for the past two years as a cleaner at a salary of Rs 600 per month.
The victim’s father died much earlier. She owns the property housing the MNS Vahtuk Sena office. She had rented out the space to one Mohammad Amin Faisal, who runs an NGO and the MNS Vahtuk Sena office from there. Faisal is the state vice-president of the MNS Vahtuk Sena.
The victim used to work as a maid at Faisal’s home, and after she rented out the office space to him she began working there as well. Momin was Faisal’s business acquaintance and would visit the office every day.
According to the victim, Momin first raped her on May 12 at 10.30 pm in the office, offering her a chocolate and promising her marriage. He allegedly raped her again on May 15, 16 and 17 at the office. On August 26, the girl complained of vomiting and her family took her to a doctor. She was found to be pregnant.
According to the victim’s statement, Momin was told about the pregnancy.
Soon after, the accused and his kin allegedly began to threaten the victim. Momin’s sisters were allegedly the first to start pressuring the girl to take money and keep mum. Later, Momin also allegedly threatened her into keeping quiet, telling her he knew a lot of leaders and criminals in the area.
Fed up and scared, the victim approached the Parksite police station in Vikhroli. Instead of helping her, the on-duty officer allegedly suggested she should accept compensation from the accused and settle the matter once and for all.
The victim then approached Sanjay Dubey, a leader of the Swabhiman Sangathan, and social worker Mansoor Sarwar Khan. With Dubey and Khan, the girl went to the police station again, but this time again the police officer allegedly asked her to accept the Rs 3 lakh that the accused was ready to pay as compensation. The officer allegedly told the girl she could take the money, go to her hometown and marry someone else.
“As if all this were not enough, the police officer called the accused to the police station and allowed him to talk to the victim,” activist Dubey said.
“The accused again threatened her, saying he would kill her after marriage. He said it was better to take the money, get an abortion done and marry someone else,” Dubey further added.
Finally, on November 22 the police filed an FIR against Momin, but refused to arrest him. Dubey then met the Home Minister and submitted a written complaint against the police officer. After RR Patil intervened in the case, the zonal DCP ensured Momin’s arrest on December 4.
Dubey said the police arrested Momin, but they also kept the victim in lock-up for a night.
“I can’t understand why the victim was lodged in the lock-up for the whole night,” he said. “She was freed next morning.”