Police Admit Molestation Video Fake But “Accused” Still in Jail
A little over a month ago, in Rajasthan’s Hindu-majority Hindoli, a video went viral showing an elderly man in a white skull cap and kurta-pyjama, molesting a child. Being shot from overhead, it was hard to identify the man or the location but word spread that the man “resembled” 81-year-old Abdul Ansari and that the young girl looked like a Rajput girl from the neighbourhood.
Since then, there were protests on the streets done separately by BJP, Bajrang Dal, VHP and Karni Sena, damaging Ansari’s home and property. Police have admitted that the man in the video was not Ansari, yet the old man continues to be in prison, 27 days and counting, as Indian Express reported.
On 31 July, the girl’s father lodged an FIR, after recognising his daughter’s frock. The FIR was filed under IPC Section 376 (rape) as well as under the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act (POCSO) against Abdul. Ansari was picked the same day.
Ansari’s 41-year-old son Shahadat Ali Ansari said:
Their house was surrounded by a crowd of 300-400 people and around 10 policemen have been stationed outside Ansari’s home since.
In a statement, the girl confirmed that Ansari frequented her father’s paan shop and led her away once on the pretext of giving sweets and molested her four times, threatening to kill her if she told anyone.
In August, journalists found the video to have originated from Uttar Pradesh and informed police and the SP said that he sent a team to Bulandshahr to investigate the case, “turning it upside down”.
It was found that the video was shot in March in UP’s Khurja and the molester was already behind bars.
No one in Bundi owned up to shooting the video once it came to light and once the girls’ family were told the video’s truth, they weren’t convinced.
The official called the girl’s testimony dubious. Officials also claim they have a video of the girl sitting with her mother, uncle and police, denying that she was molested and stated that she made the comments after being threatened by her father.
Yet, the girl sticks by her statement and her family wants Abdul punished.
With Bundi still tense, police are yet to take a call on letting Abdul go. “The investigation is going on as per merit,” the SP says.