MUMBAI: The key accused in the gang-rape of a 20-year-old girl in Malad (E) was arrested by the crime branch late on Monday. A court remanded the accused, Suraj Nepali (20), in police custody till July 13.
Meanwhile, members of the National Commission of Women (NCW) met the city police commissioner on Tuesday and inquired about the action taken in the case.
On Saturday, four persons had been arrested, three of them minors. The incident occurred on May 10 but came to light only recently after an MMS clip of the girl was found in circulation. "One of the accused, Rajesh Jaiswal (21), was a close friend of the victim. It was Jaiswal who shot the MMS," an official said.
Nepali has a past case of assault registered with the Dindoshi police. "He had left town and our team had to question his relatives to find him," ACP Jaywant Hargude said. The minors studied in class X of a convent school at Sanjay Nagar, Malad East. They got acquainted with Nepali and Jaiswal, who stayed in the vicinity.
The gangrape took place in a forest at Nimboni Pada, where the boys took the victim following a visit to the Siddhivinayak temple.
"The minors admitted that they held back the girl's hands and legs while she was being raped. They also said Nepali forced them, as well as the victim, to consume drugs," an official said. The victim left for her hometown in UP after the incident for fear of embarrassment.
Acting chairperson of NCW Yasmeen Abrar said: "We asked the police chief to record the victim's statement in the presence of a magistrate. He ensured us that the police had strong evidence against the culprits." A detailed report will be sent to NCW by Wednesday. The NCW had also come down to check whether directions for law and order issued to all states were being followed.