The girl told the police that she was not the woman filmed in the video and she had never been raped. The Valsad police registered an offence under the Information Technology Act against unidentified persons. On investigation, the Valsad police learnt that the MMS clip had been circulated from Mumbai a year ago. The clip was of a 20-year-old woman being gang-raped in Malad (East).
When the Valsad police team made inquiries in Mumbai around 10 days ago, they were told that the rape victim was someone else. Valsad police then sought help from officers at Kurar police station in Malad (East) to ascertain the identity of the woman in the clip, so that action in the IT Act case registered by them could be decided.
Valsad police learnt that the Kurar police had arrested Suraj Nepali and three others in July 2011 for allegedly raping a 20-year-old girl two months earlier. The offence had come to light when an MMS clip of the rape was found circulating in the neighbourhood. While Nepali allegedly raped the girl, the others had pinned her down and shot the video.
Subhash Dafle, senior inspector, Kurar police station said the Valsad police studied the MMS clip which had been circulated in Mumbai and compared it with the one being investigated by them and confirmed that the victim was someone else. “The gang-rape victim was in Mumbai when the Valsad police officers came here. They recorded her statement to clarify that the victim in the video was not the Valsad girl,” said Dafle.
The Mumbai Case
In May 2011, a 20-year-old woman was returning from a temple along with her friends, when they were drugged by a group of boys who then took turns in raping her on a hillock at Kurar. The incident was captured on cellphone by an accused. Police got hold of the video through news channels and registered a case suo motu.
Police identified the accused and the victim and arrested four men 15 days after the case was registered. The video was grainy, but the police were able to build a strong case as it clearly showed the faces of the accused. In the absence of a medical test, the clip is the primary evidence.