Unnao rape survivor remains 'critical but stable'; Uttar Pradesh Police forms SIT to probe accident

  • The Unnao rape survivor remained 'critical but stable' as she underwent treatment for the second day after being injured in an accident

  • The Uttar Pradesh BJP said that rape-accused MLA Kuldeep Sengar was suspended from the party long ago, amid growing demands to sack the lawmaker

  • The Uttar Pradesh BJP said that rape-accused MLA Kuldeep Sengar was suspended from the party long ago, amid growing demands to sack the lawmaker.

The Unnao rape survivor remained "critical but stable" on Tuesday as she underwent treatment at Lucknow's King George's Medical University (KGMU), a day after the vehicle in which she, her lawyer and her aunts were travelling in met with an accident while on its way to Raebareli.

 Unnao rape survivor remains critical but stable; Uttar Pradesh Police forms SIT to probe accident

The car in which the Unnao rape survivor was travelling. ANI

The Uttar Pradesh Police constituted a Special Investigation Team to probe the road accident. "We have constituted a SIT headed by Additional Superintendent of Police Raebareli Shahi Shekhar to probe into the mishap in Raebareli on Sunday," IG (Law and Order) Praveen Kumar told reporters.

Circle officers Gopinath Soni, Lakshmikant Gautam and RP Shahi will also be members of the team, he said. The team will go into all the aspects and probe the incident till the CBI takes over the probe, the officer said.

The National Commission for Women too sought a free and fair inquiry into the accident and constituted a two-member fact-finding team, which reached Lucknow and visited the hospital where the injured are undergoing treatment. The team has been informed that the victim sustained injuries on her head, lungs and is not speaking since she is on ventilator.

Meanwhile, hospital spokesperson Sandeep Tiwari told PTI there was no improvement in the condition of the two. "The situation is critical. Both of them are in the ICU and kept on ventilator," he added.

The police was working for the release of the victim's uncle from jail on parole to perform the last rites of her aunt who died in the accident. Later, the Allahabad High Court granted short-term bail to Mahesh Singh to conduct the cremation of his wife, who was in the same vehicle as the victim .

The Uttar Pradesh BJP said that rape accused MLA Kuldeep Sengar was suspended from the party long ago, amid growing demands to sack the lawmaker. "Sengar was suspended by the party earlier and there is no change in his status," state BJP president Swatantra Dev Singh told PTI.

"There is no change in the position of the party and the government, which is standing with the victim of the Unnao (rape) case," Singh said. He added that all possible help was also being extended to those who are undergoing treatment in a hospital, even as deputy Chief Minister Dinesh Sharma announced that all expenses incurred for the victim's treatment would be borne by the Uttar Pradesh government.

A car in which the Unnao rape victim, her family and lawyer were travelling was hit by an overspeeding truck in Rae Bareli on Sunday, killing two members while leaving her and her advocate critically injured. The police had filed a murder case against Sengar and nine others on Monday after the rape survivor's family filed a complaint, alleging conspiracy behind the incident.

A letter written to the Chief Justice of India by the victim and two family members just days before the car crash, expressing a threat to their lives, has also surfaced. "The CJI has asked the Secretary General to go through the letter written in Hindi for preparing a note of it for his perusal," a Supreme Court official told PTI.

Sengar, a four-time MLA from Bangermau, was arrested in April last year on charges on rape. Sharma also said that Sengar had already been suspended from the party long ago."If needed, best doctors will be brought for them. We have initiated strict action and an FIR was lodged under the sections as the family members of victims wanted," Sharma said.

Both Houses of the Parliament witnessed an uproar over the accident and the concerned authorities' laxity in dealing with the case. Congress leader Adhir Ranjan Chowdhury termed the rape as "a blot on civilised society" and demanded a response from Home Minister Amit Shah.

"People of India are feeling ashamed today due to the Unnao incident, it is a blot on civilized society, where a minor girl was gang-raped. A truck hit a victim's car and killed a witness while the victim and her lawyer are in critical condition. We demand the Home Minister to come to the House and give a statement," said Chowdhury.

Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) leader Supriya Sule had sought a detailed inquiry into the road accident. She said that the government has the slogan of "beti bachao, beti padhao" but the ground reality was different. Sule said that "daughters" were not feeling safe and the government's slogan should not be a "jumla".

The Lok Sabha witnessed vociferous protests and sloganeering by Opposition members over the incident. Members of the Congress, the Trinamool Congress (TMC), the BSP and the DMK walked out of the House. The TMC members walked out twice.

More than 30 members, mostly from the Congress, were in the Well for nearly 40 minutes and were heard shouting, "We want justice". Urging the protesting members not to politicise the matter, Parliamentary Affairs Minister Pralhad Joshi said the Uttar Pradesh government was doing everything to ensure justice.

Samajwadi Party and Trinamool Congress MPs also staged a protest in the Parliament premises holding placards with the slogan "Bharat Sharminda Hain #Unnao". Congress MPs too displayed similar posters.Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi Vadra, in a tweet this morning, said, "For Gods sake, Mr. Prime Minister, divest this criminal and his brother of the political power your party is giving them."

Congress party workers came out against the BJP in Lucknow, staging a dharna and demanding Sengar's expulsion from the saffron party. They were detained as they started marching towards the BJP office.

Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) chief Mayawati had also accused the saffron party of complicity. "The meeting of BJP MP Sakshi Maharaj with the rape-accused BJP MLA in jail proved that the raped accused are continuously getting the patronage of the ruling BJP...The Supreme Court needs to take cognisance of it," Mayawati tweeted. Samajwadi Party (SP) president Akhilesh Yadav had visited the hospital to meet the rape survivor and her family.

Family members of the driver and the owner of the truck, which rammed into a vehicle carrying the Unnao rape victim, denied the allegations to have any connection with the rape accused BJP MLA Kuldeep Singh Sengar. "Our family has no connection with the people associated with politics. We earn our wages by doing some meagre jobs," Babu Lal, uncle of the accused truck driver, told ANI.

The elder brother of the truck owner, Nand Kishore Lal, who was formerly with Samajwadi Party (SP), contended that he has heard of the accused, but never met him. On being asked why the vehicle's registration plates were covered with grease, he said that due to financial losses, his brother was unable to pay back the loan taken for the vehicle and adopted this method to evade the police.

The police had filed a murder case against Sengar and nine others on Monday after the rape survivor's family filed a complaint, alleging conspiracy behind the incident. Sengar, a four-time MLA from Bangermau, was arrested in April last year on charges on rape.

With inputs from agencies

Updated Date: Jul 30, 2019 22:17:22 IST