The entire gang involved in the robbery and rape of a nun in a convent school in Ranagaht in Nadia district of West Bengal has been identified, claimed a top CID official of the West Bengal police investigating into the case.
The majority of the gang members had come from Bangladesh and had taken shelter in the house of Gopal Sarkar – a mason and paint mistry who had worked in the school some time back. He had allegedly tipped off the gang about the school having a substantial fund for renovation work and the gang decided to raid it.
The CID officials claimed that the investigation so far revealed that the rape could have been “on the spot act” and not pre-planned or borne out of any “revenge” motive. Dilip Adak, DIG CID, said that “robbery was the motive of the criminals it appears till now.”
A senior CID official said that Gopal Sarkar’s wife Anita Sarkar and several other neighbours from Habra Goalbati were shown the CCTV captured faces of the criminals and they were able to identify most of the criminals by name.
As per their reported identification, one of the accused Milan Sarkar – a Bangladesh Jessore based relative of Gopal Sarkar was the mastermind and had brought over other associates to commit the crime. The gang is said to have committed similar robbery in the past. He was related to Gopal Sarkar and his family.
Several gang members have reportedly slipped back into Bangladesh and gone underground.
DIG CID, Adak, when asked about the identification of the gang said that the information collected during interrogation of Gopal Sarkar – the mason, and his relatives are being verified.
The revelation that the robber gang could have come from Bangladesh became political fodder for the BJP. BJP national secretary Siddarth Nath Singh said that the developments in the CID probe was egg on the face of the state government. “The rape at Ranaghat is a classical example of the prevailing lawlessness.”
Singh went on to charge that after the incident, Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee and her ministers wanted to give it a communal twist. There had been another rape in the state on the same day, but she did not speak about it because that victim did not belong to the minority community,” Singh said. Adding that now it had been proved that there was a Bangladesh connection with the incident, “It is like an egg on their face,” he said. He also said that the state government never wanted a CBI probe in Kolkata which is why the requisition was not sent in the prescribed format.
The West Bengal Governor, Kesari Nath Tripathy, also reacted to the Bangladesh angle and at a programme in the city when asked about it said:“It is a serious problem. The Centre and State should jointly take all the necessary steps to stop illegal immigration.”
The ruling party leaders, however, brushed aside such allegations, saying that the international border was the responsibility of the central government and the central forces like the Border Security Force. “Any infiltration is primarily a failure of the Border Security Force which is governed by the centre and not state governments,” said Partha Chatterjee – a TMC spokesperson.