| Nurul Islam |
Shillong, June 1: It will be exactly 365 days tomorrow ever since a now-dismissed officer of Meghalaya police has been absconding from the long arms of law. His picture is still in the list of “wanted persons” of the state police.
Nurul Islam, a sub-inspector, and the in-charge at Ampati police station in South West Garo Hills district, had gone into hiding since June 2, 2013, after fleeing from his government-allotted quarters at Tura, West Garo Hills.
The police alleged that he had raped a 14-year-old girl in Ampati police station on March 13, 2013, while on March 31 that year he had raped the victim’s 17-year-old sister at gunpoint in their house. He had also reportedly threatened the victims with dire consequences after perpetrating the crimes. However, the complaint against Islam was lodged only on June 1, 2013.
The police had registered a case against Islam, 48, at Ampati police station under Section 376 (2) (1a) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) and Sections 6 and 10 of Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act, 2012. However, even nearly after a year, Islam’s whereabouts are still shrouded in mystery.
South West Garo Hills superintendent of police R. Muthu has not lost hope of arresting the dismissed policeman.
“The chargesheet against him (Islam) has already been filed, and we are hopeful that he will be arrested,” Muthu said.
According to the district police chief, Islam could be somewhere in Assam, and brushed aside speculations that he could be hiding in neighbouring Bangladesh.
According to police records, Islam has two permanent addresses. These include Mahamayachar village under South Salmara police station in Dhubri district, and Gaibanda village under Lakhipur police station in Goalpara district in Assam.
On September 25 last year, the police dismissed Islam from service as part of the departmental action initiated against him.
Meghalaya High Court had rejected Islam’s plea for anticipatory bail in October last year.
The state government and its police had come under severe criticism from Opposition parties for their inability to bring Islam to book for the alleged crimes he had perpetrated.
In the budget session held in March, the Opposition had slammed the government for its failure to trace Islam, let alone the question of arresting the alleged culprit.
The National Commission for the Protection of Child Rights had also reprimanded the state police in relation to the alleged rape of the two minors.