Rape penalty in West Bangal : Rs 2000 fine

via . published on August 7, 2007

Date                      : 10-30 AM, date not mentioned
Village                   : Bamunpukur
Police Station        : Nabadwip
District                  : Nadia
State                     : West Bengal
Source                  : The Telegraph [6th August, 2007, [
http://www.telegraphindia.com/1070806/asp/bengal/story_8154975.asp ]


A meeting of village elders led by the CPM panchayat chief let off with a fine a young man who raped his 10-year-old student. The culprit — first-year BA student Mizanur Biswas — was told to pay Rs 2,000 at Bamunpukur village in Nadia’s Nabadwip last Tuesday. The 19-year-old would have got away by paying the fine had it not been for the victim’s parents, who thought it was a shame to compromise and refused to accept the money. The girl’s father, Bidyut Das, a carpenter, lodged an FIR against Mizanur yesterday. The Nabadwip College student is absconding. His father is an affluent man, owning two shops — a stationery shop and a grocery — in Mayapur.


Police said Mizanur called Rani (name changed), a Class IV student, to his house for tuition around 10.30am, when his parents were away shopping. The girl returned home bleeding and crying about an hour later. “She was visibly in pain. But she could not express herself properly when we repeatedly asked her what had happened,” said Bidyut. Rani was taken to the Nabadwip State General Hospital. “The medical report has confirmed rape. We have started a rape case against Mizanur and are looking for him,” said Pradyut Banerjee, the inspector in charge of Nabadwip police station.


Mizanur’s father Rafique, who is known for his close contacts with local CPM leaders, had sought the Bamunpukur village panchayat’s help. The village boy called the shalishi — a conciliatory meeting. Such meetings to discuss criminal complaints are illegal. So, the chief, Ayan Nabi Sheikh, convened an unofficial meeting with some other villagers. It was evident from the outcome of the meeting that their objective was to bail out Mizanur. “The boy (Mizanur) told us that he caned the girl for not learning her lessons properly and beat her up with a cane,” said Ayan, also a CPM local committee member. “We decided to fine the boy Rs 2,000 for the girl’s medical expenses. But I don’t know what happened later,” he added.


Inspector Banerjee confirmed that bruises on the girl’s body indicated that she had been caned. “But she bled from her private parts and the doctor who examined her confirmed rape,” he added. Bidyut and his wife Swapna put their foot down after hearing the shalishi’s verdict. “We may be poor, but how can money compensate what happened to our daughter?” asked Swapna.

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