The body of a two-and-half-year-old girl was found at Chhaparwad village in Randhikpur here on Monday night, a day after she was allegedly kidnapped by her distant relative. The postmortem report stated that she was raped and then murdered, police said.
As per the girl’s grandfather, at around 9 am on Sunday the victim’s distant uncle, who is a resident of Chhaparwad village, had come to their home to play with the victim and her sisters. The accused then picked up the girl and informed her grandfather that he was taking her to a nearby shop to get her some snacks, police said.
The girl’s grandfather did not suspect the accused as he was their relative. The girl’s parents, who are agricultural labourers, raised an alarm when they returned home after two hours and failed to find their daughter anywhere. After frantically looking for the girl, her parents approached Dahod police and lodged a case of kidnapping against the accused. Police then launched a manhunt, but failed to locate the accused. On Monday evening, the accused returned to the village and the girl’s parents asked him about the whereabouts of the girl, police said. The accused initially said he did not know anything about the girl. The victim’s parents then brought him to the police station where he informed them about the whereabouts of the girl. Police then found the girl’s naked body at a firm in the same village on Monday night.
“The girl’s distant uncle is the prime accused in kidnapping of the child. Now he is also the prime suspect in the rape and murder of the child. We have received an autopsy report that confirms that the child was raped. We will book him under charges of rape and under Protection Of Children from Sexual Offences Act and arrest him after conducting his medical tests,” said Randhikpur police sub-inspector, R K Rathwa.
The autopsy was conducted on Tuesday evening by the forensic department at the SSG hospital in Vadodara. Preliminary reports from the forensic department stated smothering leading to asphyxia as the cause of death. The report further stated that the girl was raped and murdered 36-72 hours before the autopsy, police said.