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Bail salt on assault wound

Physical pain Jaya Chakraborty can cope with, but not the knowledge that the men who assaulted her are out on bail while she is in hospital, unsure whether her two-month-old foetus is alive.

“How could they be released just like that?” the homemaker in her mid-20s asked from her bed at MR Bangur Hospital on Sunday, pointing out that her neighbour Sushil Bag, one of the two accused, has several criminal cases lodged against him, most of them of rioting.

The resident of Sarat Ghosh Garden in Kasba was allegedly punched in the face and kicked in the stomach when she protested against Bag and Sital Karmakar, another resident of the area, assaulting her sister-in-law Shefali Prasad.

Jaya, expecting her first child, could not find out whether the foetus was alright because the hospital wing that does X-ray and ultrasonography tests was closed on Sunday.

“A urine test for pregnancy was negative. There is a slim chance that the report was negative because the foetus, if at all there is one, is dead. We will have to conduct ultrasonography to know for sure,” said Dr K.K. Banik, the medical superintendent of the hospital.

The alleged assault occurred on Friday night. Jaya’s husband Subrata had lodged a complaint with Kasba police station against both the accused, leading to their arrest a few hours later. They were granted bail on Saturday.

Police claimed they were only following the law. “We framed the charges according to the statement by the complainant,” said an officer.

The two were booked under sections for outrage of modesty, criminal intimidation, voluntarily causing hurt, wrongful restraint and common intention.

“That the woman was pregnant was not mentioned in the FIR,” added the officer.

Sections 314 (death caused by act done with intent to cause miscarriage) and 313 (causing miscarriage without woman’s consent) of the IPC are non-bailable.

The family said the police were not returning the reports of the first medical tests conducted on Jaya after the assault. A police officer said the reports would be submitted in court.

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