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PM pulls up police

New Delhi, April 19: Prime Minister Manmohan Singh has issued a statement rapping police for their “unacceptable treatment” of women protesting the rape of a five-year-old child in Delhi within a day of the crime coming to light.

This is in contrast with the silence immediately after the December gang rape of a paramedical student, who later died of injuries suffered in the assault.

“The Prime Minister has been deeply disturbed to hear news of the shameful incident in which a 5-year-old child in Delhi was sexually abused and is now fighting for her life in hospital,” a statement from the Prime Minister’s Office said.

Singh also spoke to Delhi lieutenant governor Tejinder Khanna and conveyed “the need for the strictest possible action to be taken against the erring officials” and appropriate medical care to the child who is admitted to AIIMS.

“The Prime Minister has also seen news visuals of the completely unacceptable treatment meted out by police officers to some women protesting against this incident,” the PMO statement said.

Although the statement did not mention the alleged attempt by the police to bribe the child’s father to hush up the case, the home ministry has demanded a detailed report from the police.

Pressure will mount on home minister Sushil Kumar Shinde to act tough and on Delhi police commissioner Neeraj Kumar to introspect. Chief minister Sheila Dikshit has long demanded that Kumar should resign.

After the December gang rape the government had brought an anti-rape law that has the provision for death penalty if the victim dies or is reduced to a vegetative state.