Unnao Rape Victim’s Dying Declaration Strong Evidence To Nail Killers

Lucknow: The dying declaration of the 23-year-old Unnao rape victim, who was set ablaze last week by five men, including the two accused of raping her earlier, is a “strong evidence” and will be used to nail her killers, Uttar Pradesh police chief O P Singh said on Tuesday.

The police will go in for the prosecution of the five accused in a fast-track court, the director-general of police said a day after the Utter Pradesh government took a Cabinet decision to set up 218 new fast-track courts — 144 to try rape cases and 74 for sexual offences against children.

“Dying declaration is a very strong evidence, and certainly, it will be used. Before dying, the girl deposed before a sub-divisional magistrate that these five persons attacked her,” DGP Singh told PTI.

“When she was taken to Delhi and admitted to the hospital, she also had a chat with doctors. We will try to get the statement of the doctor also in this regard. These will be strong evidence to chargesheet these five criminals,” he added.

Singh also said the police will soon file the chargesheet in the murder case.

“We will be chargesheeting them within a few days. We want to fast-track the entire case,” said the police chief.

“We are also exploring the possibility of going for the DNA test of the accused,” said Singh.

Explaining the rational behind going in for the DNA test of the accused, the police chief said the victim also had a mobile phone and a purse, which have already been sent for the forensic test to ascertain if those items came in contact with the accused and carry their fingerprints or traces of their sweat or hair etc from which the DNA sample of the accused could possibly be lifted.

“We would then match the DNA samples of the accused to those found on the victim’s items,” said Singh.

“We also have several strong pieces of circumstantial evidence in the case,” said the DGP.

In her statement to Sub Divisional Magistrate Dayashankar Pathak, the woman had said she was attacked when she reached Gaura turn near her home on her way to the court to attend the hearing in her rape case.

She had specifically named Harishankar Trivedi, Ram Kishore Trivedi, Umesh Bajpai, Shivam Trivedi and Shubham Trivedi as the persons who set her on fire.

She had also said Shivam and Shubham Trivedi had abducted and raped her in December 2018. The FIR in the case, however, was registered in March.

After being set on fire, the woman had run amok in a ball of fire, crying for help for a while, before people rushed to help her and called police.

After the chilling incident, the woman was first taken to a community health centre from where she was sent to the district hospital and then to a hospital in Lucknow, before finally airlifted to Safdarjung Hospital in Delhi where she died a day later.

All the five men involved in the Thursday morning attack were arrested within hours of the crime.

In a video, which surfaced on the social media on Tuesday, family members of Shivam Trivedi said, “All I want from the government is a CBI probe into the matter. We want justice.”

The Uttar Pradesh government on Monday cleared a proposal to set up 218 new fast-track courts to try sexual offences against women and children. The state presently has only 81 fast track courts.

Now, all cases of sexual offences in the state will be tried by fast-track courts, state Law Minister Brajesh Pathak had told reporters on Monday while announcing the Cabinet decision to set up 218 fast track courts to handle cases of rapes and other sexual offences.

The state presently has over 42,000 cases of crime against children besides 25,000 cases of rape.

(PTI)