Four West Bengal Police officials were suspended on Monday for allegedly dragging the body of a minor girl on the road during a protest by her family, The Indian Express reported.
The girl’s body was found in a pond in the Kaliaganj area of the Uttar Dinajpur district on April 21, a day after she had gone missing. Her family has alleged that she was raped before she was murdered.
During a protest held by the girl’s family and villagers on April 21, some of the demonstrators had blocked a road, calling for the arrest of the culprits. Clashes subsequently broke out between the protestors and police personnel, during which six police officials allegedly dragged the girl’s body for a while on the road before placing it in am ambulance.
A video of the incident was shared widely on social media.
On Monday, four assistant sub-inspectors were suspended in connection with the incident. “The suspension orders were issued on the basis of a departmental inquiry that we conducted,” Uttar Dinajpur Superintendent of Police Mohammed Sana Akhtar said, according to The Indian Express.
Three of the suspended police officials are from the Kaliaganj police station and one is from the Raiganj police station.
The police have filed a case in connection with the girl’s death under Section 302 (murder) of the Indian Penal Code and sections of the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act.
The accused person in the case has been identified as Javed Akhtar, officials said.
The National Commission for Women and the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights took cognisance of the case last week. Rekha Sharma, the chairperson of the women’s panel, wrote to the West Bengal director general of police asking him to intervene in the matter and to ensure a fair and time-bound investigation.
A lawyer has also filed a public interest litigation seeking a probe by the Central Bureau of Investigation into the case, the Hindustan Times reported. The petitioner, Anindya Sundar Das, has also sought security for the girl’s family and that they be paid Rs 1 crore as compensation.
The case will be heard on Tuesday.