KOCHI: The investigation into the rape of a 15-year-old girl, whose body was fished out of the Periyar a few weeks ago, took a new turn with the police detaining a 17-year-old boy on Sunday. The probe team headed by Narcotic Cell DySP Zacharia Mathew suspect that the boy raped the girl.
According to the police, he is a neighbour of the girl and they were in a relationship for the past two years. “The boy got acquainted with the girl through social media, and they were in a relationship since 2019. He raped the victim during the period. But their affair was broken a couple of months ago. They were upset after that,” a police officer said.
On December 23, the police found the body of the girl under the Thadikkadavu bridge near UC College, Aluva. Though a preliminary police investigation suggested the girl had died by suicide following a breakup, the autopsy report found that she had been raped.
TNIE reported the rape, and following that, Ernakulam Rural SP K Karthick constituted a special investigation team headed by the Narcotic Cell DySP to probe the case. Having started the investigation as a case of suicide under the CrPC, the police -- following the autopsy report --invoked charges of rape under the IPC and the Pocso Act provisions. “We have collected evidence to prove that the boy raped the girl. The digital evidence collected during the investigation was also against the minor,” said the officer requesting anonymity.
Meanwhile, the police are also investigating how many times the minor raped the girl, and where. “Though they were in a relationship for more than two years, it was a rape. A minor’s consent is always ‘no consent in the eyes of the law’. Since two minors are involved, we are dealing with the case carefully,” the officer said.