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Mumbai: 5 men allegedly gangrape photojournalist, 15 suspects detained


Smitha Nair, Shoaib Ahmed, CNN-IBN
Aug 23, 2013 at 09:27am IST

Mumbai: A 23-year-old photojournalist was allegedly gangraped by five men on Thursday around 6:30 pm while she was on an assignment at Shakti Mill in Parel area of Central Mumbai, according to police sources.

The photographer, who is working with an English magazine, was with her male colleague who was bound and gagged as the culprits raped the woman. Hours later, the rape survivor managed to break free and went to Jaslok Hospital. The girl is said to be in a stable condition and has reportedly given details of the culprits.

The police has released the sketches of all the five accused.

The hospital informed Mumbai Police and a case of gangrape has been registered in NM Joshi Marg police station and 15 suspects have been detained. The police have recorded the statement of both the girl and her colleague and sketches of the suspects are also being prepared.

The girl also named two of the suspects, police said. The girl told police that two of them were calling each other as Rupesh and Sajid, they said, adding that some drug addicts have been picked up from the area for questioning.

The girl's male colleague has been taken back to the scene of the crime and around 45 people have been questioned so far.

The girl in her statement said that while they were taking photographs, the duo was approached by two men who asked her if she had permission to shoot. They subsequently took her to meet with the people who they claimed were authorities of the place.

Another man joined them and then they attacked her. The girl was also threatened that they will kill if she shouted. The men had broken beer bottles in their hand.

She also told police said the culprits were present in the Shakti Mills compound. They started making lewd remarks and harassed her. When her friend intervened, two of them assaulted him. Three others took the woman inside the dilapidated structure and raped her.

Preliminary reports suggested that she has sustained multiple internal injuries, police said. A medical bulletin will be released in a few hours.

Dr Taran Gyanchandani, acting CEO of the hospital, said, "We are doing the needful...she is under strict observation. At the moment we can't say anything."

Maharashtra Home Minister RR Patil said, "The case will be investigated very seriously. The accused will be caught very soon." He told reporters outside the hospital. He said Mumbai Police Commissioner Satyapal Singh has been directed to ensure that the culprits are arrested soon. In a statement given to police, the girl said the five culprits were present in the Shakti Mills compound.

Police Commissioner Satyapal Singh said a case of gangrape has been filed. "In the evening, the girl and her colleague were clicking pictures. Two men approached her asking her if she had permission to shoot. Another man then joined in and the photographer was gangraped. We've brought in 10 people for questioning. A case of gangrape has been filed," he said.

Over a dozen police team have fanned out across the city.

In the first 4 months of this year, there has been a rape in Mumbai every day.

(With additional inputs from PTI)

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