PUNE: One more person, a clean-up marshal working in Mumbai, has been arrested in connection with the alleged kidnapping and gang-rape of a 14-year-old girl, the Pune police said on Wednesday.
With this, 17 persons have been arrested in the case so far.
According to the police, the latest accused (32) is a contractual employee working as a clean-up marshal in the Mumbai civic body.
A senior police officer said the girl, after being sexually assaulted by some of the accused, including auto-rickshaw drivers at multiple places in Pune on September 1, headed to Dadar railway station in Mumbai to meet her friend.
“While she was waiting on the platform, the accused (clean-up marshal) approached her after seeing her in distress and offered juice, water and some eatables.
The accused told the girl one can not stay on the railway platform after midnight and took her to his house, where he allegedly raped her,” said the officer.
Before the incident at Dadar, the girl, who was waiting at the Pune railway station to board a train to meet a friend after leaving home on August 31, was told by an auto-rickshaw driver that the train would be available the next day, after which he promised to find her accommodation for the night, the police had said earlier.
However, he waylaid her and several of his associates, including auto-rickshaw drivers and two Class IV railway staff, raped her at multiple places in the city, police had said.
The police had said that after the Mumbai incident, the girl met her male friend and the two went to Chandigarh, where she was traced by the Pune police on September 5 and brought back to the city.
Subsequently, more arrests were made in the case.
Besides 14 persons who allegedly sexually assaulted the teenager, the Pune police have arrested the girl’s male friend and two hotel managers in the case.