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Ryan International murder: Key witness alleges torture by police, entire staff of school quizzed

Harpal Singh, the gardener of the Ryan International School and a key witness in the murder of Class II student Pradyuman Thakur, on Friday said that he was tortured by police to force a confession out of him.

According to The Times of India report, the Gurugram Police's Special Investigation Team (SIT) had detained the gardener on Wednesday.

The school bus conductor Ashok Kumar has emerged as the prime suspect in the murder. Ashok's lawyer on Friday alleged that the conductor was also tortured and electrocuted during interrogation, News18 reported.

Meanwhile, the Gurugram Police on Thursday quizzed the entire staff of Ryan International School, days after the murder of Thakur, who was found with his throat slit in the washroom of the school on 8 September, India Today reported.

The report added that over two dozen employees of the school were called for questioning by the police in order to find more information in the murder case.

"The statements of school staff will be recorded separately and if required their statements will be corroborated and teachers can be cross questioned. The purpose of cross questioning is to know the location and role of each and every staff member who was present inside the school on the day when Pradyuman was murdered," India Today quoted a senior police officer as saying.

According to the police, Ashok slit Pradhyumn's throat in the washroom after a failed attempt to sexually assault the boy, says The Times of India report.

"The SIT does not want to leave out a single piece of evidence which can be important and work as a key breakthrough for us to solve this case. With three days left for submission of chargesheet in court, we have got possible positive leads against ... Ashok Kumar," a senior SIT officer told PTI on Thursday.

"Some more arrests are likely to be made," he added.

SIT teams on Wednesday searched the school in Gurugram for clues while a CBSE panel also inspected the premises to examine loopholes in security arrangements.

Besides Harpal Singh, the SIT has questioned 17 persons including section in-charge Anju Dudeja, suspended acting principal Neerja Batra, former principal Rakhi Verma, bus driver Saurabh Raghav, bus contractor Harkesh Pradhan and eight security guards.

With inputs from PTI

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Updated Date: Sep 15, 2017 12:44:37 IST