The Cachar district superintendent of police submitted a report to the Assam Human Rights Commission (AHRC) on allegations of rape of a patient by her doctor raised by the Barak Human Rights Protection Committee (BHRPC). Below are the comments of the BHRPC on the police report:
1. The findings of the police investigation that the charge under section 376 of the Indian Penal Code, 1860 against the accused/alleged violator is established as stated in the report of the district superintendent of police (SP), Cachar is substantially correct.
2. The medical report can not be relied upon for a number of reasons:
i. There was inordinate delay in conducting the test;
ii. The report goes against the circumstantial evidences;
iii. The report goes against the accounts of the witnesses as recorded by the police;
iv. The element of sympathy of the doctors who conducted the test towards the doctor who is the alleged violator creeping in and vitiating the objectivity of the findings can not be ruled out as both of them are colleagues and belong to the same profession.
3. The findings of the police is correct because there are supports and corroborations among the accounts given by the victim/survivor in her First Information Report (FIR), her statement before the judicial magistrate recorded under section 164 of the Criminal Procedure Code (CrPC), 1973 and the accounts of witnesses recoded by the police.
4. As the report of the medical test is not reliable for the reasons stated above the claim in the report about the age of the victim/survivor being between 18 to 20 years can also not be relied upon.
5. According to the statements of the victim/survivor in both the FIR and that which has been recorded under section 164 of the CrPC and the witness accounts, it appears that the victim was a minor at the time of violations of her rights.
6. The facts and circumstances described in documents on record including the FIR, victim’s statement under section 164 of the CrPC, and the report of the SP clearly establish commission of offence of rape by the alleged violator upon the victim/survivor. Therefore, it is established that human rights of the survivor/victim have been violated.
7. The filing of charge-sheet by the police will facilitate the criminal court to conduct trial on the criminal aspect of case in order only to fix criminal liability and proportionate penal measure called for under the law. It is not the domain of the trial court to consider human rights liability of the violator and remedies to the victim/survivor.
8. Therefore, it comes under the jurisdiction of the Commission to fix human rights liability and more importantly to provide redress to the victim/survivor in terms of adequate compensation.
In view of the above submission, the BHRPC most humbly urges that the Commission may be pleased to:
- Recommend to the authorities to provide an adequate amount of compensation to the victim/survivor;
- While fixing the quantum of the compensation the Commission may take into consideration the aggravating factors involved in the case such as (a) that the alleged violator is a government servant paid from the state exchequer for acting as savoir for those who are suffering from physical distress; (b) that the victim/survivor went to the alleged violator in full trust as his position demands; (c) that the alleged violator took benefit of position of custodian of the victim/survivors at the moment of commission of the violating acts; (d) that the case has a clear custodial angle; (e) that the age and social and other circumstances of the victim/survivor are such that the minor girl has had an entire life full of colours but which has been destroyed beyond repair for no faults of hers and her life has become an undesirable and unbearable burden on her fragile shoulders; and
- Any other recommendations and/or actions as the Commission deems fit and proper for vindication of human rights of the victim/survivor and to meet ends of justice.
The statement of BHRPC on the matter can be viewed here.
Tags: Adolescent girl, Assam, Assam police, Barak Human Rights Protection Committee, Barak valley, BHRPC, Cachar, Human rights, Investigation, Rape, Rape victim, Right to life, Right to live with dignity, School girl, Sex, Sexual assault, Violence against women