Police file chargesheet in Mumbai photojournalist rape case

Mumabi GangrapeA 508-page chargesheet has been filed against the five arrested accused. (IE Photo)

Almost a month after a photojournalist was gangraped in Shakti Mills, the Mumbai Police Crime Branch on Thursday filed a 508-page chargesheet before the Esplanade court against the five accused arrested in the case.

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The victim's statement before a magistrate and the statement of her male colleague who was with her at the time of the incident form a vital part of the chargesheet.

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According to the statement of her colleague, now a prime witness in the case, they had gone to Shakti Mills on August 22 for an assignment. The desolate mill had no clear access and they stood outside for a few minutes, before finding a way in. They were stopped by two men who told them there was a better access road ahead, he said.

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The victim and her colleague have identified the two men as Vijay Jadhav, 18, and Salim Ansari, 27. In his statement, the colleague has mentioned three other men — Mohammad Kasim Hafiz Shaikh, 21, Siraj Rehman Khan, 24, and a 16- year-old — who joined the duo. He said the accused tied him up with three belts — his, the victim's, and one belonging to an accused — and left him in one side of the mill, while the victim was taken inside, where the accused allegedly raped her.

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"At regular intervals, I heard her shriek," said the colleague in his statement. He was told that she was being "inquired" and that she was not co-operating. After all five men had allegedly raped her, the first rapist, identified as Shaikh, once again raped the victim.

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