Pune: Minor Girl Forced Into Prostitution, Couple Booked

Bharati Vidyapeeth Police Station
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Tikam Shekhawat

Katraj, 16th February 2024: A 17-year-old girl was allegedly confined to a room in a lodge for 10–15 days and forced into prostitution as she failed to return Rs 30,000 which she had taken loan from a couple for treatment of her father. The minor was also raped repeatedly, police said.

The Bharati Vidyapeeth Police Station, Pune City Police, has registered a case against Poonam Akash Mane (22) and her husband for offences under sections 363, 366A, 343, 370, 376, and 376(2) of the IPC, along with sections under the Immoral Traffic (Prevention) Act, 1956. The woman’s husband, Akash Suresh Mane (24), a resident of Katraj, is still at large, and the police team is searching for him.

The Maharashtra State Commission for Women has also taken cognizance of the case. Under the provisions of the Maharashtra State Commission for Women Act, 1993, the commission has asked Bharti Vidyapeeth Police Station to submit a detailed report.

Smartna Patil, DCP Zone II in this regard, stated, “The father of the victim suffered from alcoholism. Due to medical issues of the father, she had taken a loan of Rs 30,000 from the accused. Since she couldn’t return the money, the accused took advantage of the situation and abducted the victim. The victim spent fifteen days in various lodges near Bharti Vidyapeeth and Katraj after being brought there. The victim was raped by the accused multiple times. Along with forcing the girl into prostitution and earning money, the accused and his spouse allegedly made death threats against her. The Bharti Vidyapeeth Police is investigating the case.”

The top cops of the Pune Police are also monitoring the case.

While speaking to Punekar News, Joint CP Pravin Pawar said, “The police have registered a case under POCSO and PITA 1956 against the accused. The team is further investigating the case.”

After Amitesh Kumar took over the charge of the Pune Police Commissioner, he has taken stringent action against illegal activities in Pune. However, it will be intriguing to know how a minor was forced into prostitution at various lodges in Dhankawdi and Katraj areas for half a month but Social Security Cell and the local police has no intel about the crime when it occurred.

Senior Police Inspector Dashrath Patil of Bharti Vidyapeeth Police Station has confirmed that the accused have used forged Aadhar card for identity proof while taking the victim to various lodges.