Friday, October 24, 2008

Statement of the Nun who was raped in Orissa

Statement of Orissa rape victim Sr. Meena

Sister Meena
On 24th August, around 4.30 pm, hearing the shouting of a large crowd, at the gate of Divya Jyoti Pastoral Centre, I ran out through the back door and escaped to the forest along with others. We saw our house going up in flames. Around 8.30 p.m. we came out of the forest and went to the house of a Hindu gentle man who gave us shelter.

On 25th August, around 1.30 p.m., the mob entered the room where I was staying in Prahald's house, one of them slapped me on my face, caught my hair and pulled me out of the house. Two of them were holding my neck to cut off my head. Others told them to take me out to the road, I saw Fr. Thomas Chellan also being taken out and being beaten. The mob consisting of 40-50 men was armed with lathis, axes, spades, crowbars, iron rods, sickles etc. They took both of us to the main road. Then they led us to the burnt down Jan Vikas building saying that they were going to throw us into the smoldering fire.

When we reached the Jan Vikas building, they threw us to the verandah on the way to the dinning room, which was full of ashes and broken glass pieces. One of them tore my blouse and others my undergarments. Father Thomas Chellan protested but they beat him and pulled him out from there. They pulled out my saree and one of them stepped on my right hand and another on my left hand and then a third person raped me on the verandah mentioned above. When it was over, I managed to get up and put my petticoat and saree. The another young man whom I can identify caught me and took me to a room near the staircase. He opened his pants and was attempting to rape me when the crowd reached there. One man in the crowd told him not to do any further harm and so he left me. I will be able to identify the person who raped me and other three persons who stepped on my hands and tore my saree etc.

I hid myself under the staircase. The crowd was shouting' where is that sister, come let us rape her, at least 100 people rape. They found me under the staircase and took me out to the road. There I saw Fr. Chellan was kneeling down and the crowd was beating him with hands and sticks. They were searching for a rope to tie both of us together to burn us in fire. Someone suggested to make us parade naked. They made us to walk on the road till Nwagaon market which was half a kilometer from there. They made us to fold our hands and walk. I was with petticoat and saree as they had already torn away my blouse and undergarments. They tried to strip even there but I resisted and they went on beating me with hands on my cheeks and head and with sticks on my back several times.

When we reached the market place a dozen of OSAP policemen were there. I went to them asking to protect me and I sat in between two policemen but they did not move. One from the crowd again pulled me out from there and they wanted to lock us in their temple mandap. The crowd led me and Fr. Thomas Chellan to the Nuagaon block building saying that they will hand us over to B.D.O. From there along with the block officer the mob took us to the police outpost, Nuagaon, other police men remained far.

The mob said that they will comeback after eating and one of them who attacked me remained back in the police outpost. Policemen then came to police outpost. They were talking very friendly with the man who had attacked me and stayed back . In police outpost we remained until the inspector incharge of Balliguda with his police team came and took us to Balliguda. They were afraid to take us straight to the police station and they kept us sometime in jeep in the garage, from there they brought us to the station. The inspector inchareg and other two government officers took me privately and asked whatever happened to me. I narrated every thing in detail to the police, how I was attacked, raped, taken away from policemen, paraded half naked and how the police men did not help me when I asked for help while weeping bitterly. I saw the inspector writing down. The inspector asked me "are you interested in filing FIR?" Do you now what will be the consequence? At about 10.00 p.m., I was taken for medical check up accompanied by a lady police officer to Balliguda Hospital. They were afraid to keep us in police station, saying that the mob may attack police station. So the police took us to the IB (inspection bungalow) where CRP men were camping.

On 26/08/08 around 9.00 a.m. we were taken to Baliguda Police Station. When I was writing the FIR, the Inspector In-Charge (IIC) asked me to hurry up and not to write in detail. When I started writing about the police, the I .I. C told me this is not the way to write FIR, make it short. Sot I re-wrote it for the third time in one and half page. I filed the FIR, but I was not given a copy of it.

At around 4.00 pm the inspector in charge of Balliguda police station along with some other government officers put us in the OSRTC bus to Bhubaneshwar along with other stranded passengers. Police were there till Rangamati where all passengers had their supper. After that I did not see the police. We got down near Nayagarh and traveled in private vehicle and reached Bhubaneshwar around 2.00 am on 27th August.

State police failed to stop the crimes, failed to protect me from the attackers, they were friendly with the attackers, and they tried their best that I did not register an FIR, not make complaints against police, police did not take down my statement as I narrated in detail and they abandoned me half of the way. I was raped and now I don't want to be victimized by the Orissa Police. I want C.B.I enquiry. God bless India, God bless you all.

Sr. Meena