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Job fret for free Pinki

Athlete Pinki Pramanik walked out of prison on Wednesday worrying over whether she would retain her railway job.

The 27-year-old was arrested on June 14 following a rape charge brought against her by a woman and was suspended from service after spending 48 hours in custody. “I hope they (the railways) will take me back once they know the truth,” said Pinki, who had joined the Eastern Railway as a ticket examiner in 2003.

According to railway rules, an employee has to be suspended if he/she spends more than 48 hours in custody.

“The suspension is usually withdrawn after the accused gets bail. But this is a special case and we have to deliberate on it. Our legal cell will go through the order and take a decision,” said an Eastern Railway official.

The athlete, who had won gold for India at the Asian Games, got bail on Tuesday. She walked out of Dum Dum Central jail around 9.45am to a “warm welcome” by father Durgacharan Pramanik, who had come from Purulia, lawyers and former athlete Jyotirmoyee Sikdar. The team accompanied Pinki to Baguiati police station, where she collected her belongings the cops had seized from her after her arrest, and then to her home at Chinar Park, near City Centre 2.

Pinki, however, had to return to the police station once again as the keys to her home were not on her and could finally enter her house around 2.10pm.

“I fail to understand why officers at Baguiati police station love to harass me. I called the police station when I realised that the keys were not with me. An officer said they, too, did not have the keys and asked me to break the lock. But when I went back to the police station on the advice of my well-wishers, the officers handed me the keys,” said Pinki.

An officer later said the keys were with the complainant. “We took them from her and handed them to Pinki.”

Sitting at her home, Pinki recounted what she claimed were events leading to her arrest. “The complainant (Pinki used to share the home with her) had called me over to Netaji Subhas Park in Teghoria late on June 13, saying she was going somewhere and wanted to give me the keys to my house. She was waiting there with policemen. The moment I arrived, they forced me into a vehicle and took me to the police station,” she said.

The athlete said she had been living in railway quarters in Sealdah for a week before her arrest as the complainant used to harass her at home.

“Problem started about four months back. She had stolen a gold chain. When I confronted her, she threatened to circulate a nude picture of mine. Then she started demanding Rs 20 lakh,” said Pinki. Metro failed to get in touch with the complainant to hear her version.