A rising tide of outrage over the brutal gang-rape of a young paramedical student today led to announcement of a raft of measures including increased police patrolling and five fast track courts to deal with such cases and the Delhi High Court to step in and monitor the probe.
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Prime Minister Manmohan Singh described the assault against the girl in a moving bus here on Sunday night as "very upsetting" even as a fifth person--Akshay Thakur—was detained in Bihar in the case and being brought to Delhi and police hot on the trail of a sixth person Raju, a helper.
The 23-year-old girl, who was also tortured, underwent a fifth surgery and "continues to be critical but stable", doctors attending on her at Safdarjung hospital said. Doctors performed an elective abdominal surgery --gastronomy and duodenustromy -- had to remove her gangrenous small intestine. They said she has lost most of her intestine and remains on "ventilatory support."
Delhi Police invoked more stringent charges of attempt to murder and destruction of evidence against the six accused. Taking suo motu cognisance of the dastardly crime, the Delhi High Court decided to monitor its investigation by directing police to carry a "high standard" probe and file the chargesheet only after the court's perusal.
"Nobody is safe," the court said, as it pulled up the police, noting such incidents repeatedly happen in the city. Asking Delhi police how the bus, having tinted glasses, kept plying on busy roads for 40 minutes and the sexual assault remained undetected, a bench headed by Chief Justice D Murugesan directed Police Commissioner Neeraj Kumar to file a status report within two days giving all details.
As the shocking crime continued to engage the attention of Parliament, Government announced increased police patrolling, immediate crackdown on vehicles having tinted glass besides impounding of buses and autorickshaws being plied by unverified drivers.
All commercial vehicles, including buses, will be asked to keep their lights on during night while plying in Delhi, Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde said. The Registrar General of the High Court communicated to Delhi Government its acceptance of the recommendation to immediately make functional five fast track courts to deal with cases of sexual assault against women, officials said.
"It's a heinous crime. It is very upsetting," Prime Minister Singh said while receiving a delegation of women MPs who raised the gang-rape case