MADURAI: The Madurai rural police arrested a man for allegedly repeatedly raping his daughter for nearly a year, here on Thursday night. The Child Welfare Committee has rescued the girl and kept her under its custody after medical examination at the Government Rajaji Hospital.
The abuse was revealed after ChildLine 1098 received a call from a relative of the minor girl. On information, the police arrested the man and booked him under the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act.
B Ganesha Murthy (31), a commercial vehicle driver, was married to Kumari (name changed). They have three daughters — the victim Shalini (name changed), a toddler and an infant, said the police.
Shalini is a Class VII student at a suburban school here. According to her statement to the Child Welfare Committee, Murthy is addicted to ganja. Each time he raped her, he would tie a thali (mangalsutra) around her neck. Though it was known to Kumari, a daily wage worker, Murthy warned her of dire consequences if she revealed his activities to anyone.
At nights, Murthy would tie the thali to Shalini stating that she was his wife and rape her. Murthy, who was irregular to work, also raped Shalini during the daytime, said the police. The girl told the committee that her father beat her while having sex.
Murthy would lie to Shalini’s teachers that he needs her help to take care of his two other daughters since his wife goes for work, said S Joseph Stephen, Madurai ChildLine coordinator, who filed the police complaint.
The family lives in a one-room house. “The room is separated with cardboard. He rapes his daughter even while the other children are present in the house,” said the police.
Murthy also beats his second child, who is aged five, threatening her not to reveal his ghastly act to others. He allegedly told Shalini that he would soon make his other two daughters his wives and forced her to cooperate.
A traumatised Shalini has requested ChildLine officials to allow her to sleep properly.
The incident came to light when the relative informed the ChildLine. On Thursday, Murthy took Shalini to his relative’s house at Teppakulam. Using the opportunity, the girl revealed the sexual abuse she faced from her father to her relatives. The police arrested Murthy and transferred the case to the Melur All Women Police Station.