The Telegraph
Friday , February 21 , 2014
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After spray, mom slashed

The mother of the three-year-old girl abducted from their Salt Lake home, assaulted and left on the terrace two days ago was allegedly slashed while waiting with other guardians on the campus of her elder daughter’s school on Thursday afternoon.

This was the third police complaint lodged in four days by the woman’s husband, a West Bengal Civil Service (WBCS) officer.

Two police officers deputed for the security of the children and their mother in the wake of the previous two incidents were standing outside the school when the alleged attack occurred.

Earlier this week, the officer had alleged that there had been an attempt to kidnap his elder daughter from outside her school. On Tuesday, the family lodged a complaint citing that the officer’s wife was made unconscious with a spray near the entrance to their flat.

On regaining consciousness, she discovered that her younger daughter was missing. The child was later found on the terrace of the building with an obscenity scribbled on her abdomen. She had injuries too.

Three drivers who take turns driving the pool car that ferries the complainant’s seven-year-old daughter to her school within the township were interrogated after the complaint on Thursday.

The police said they had stumbled on “something” in the CCTV footage collected from the school but didn’t elaborate.

The alleged attack on the WBCS officer’s wife occurred around 12.40pm when she was standing inside the school compound with 150-odd guardians and drivers of the pool cars that ferry children home.

“The class teacher was escorting the child to her mother when the lady suddenly shouted that someone had slashed her hand,” the principal of the school said.

“The woman was bleeding from the cut and she was administered first aid in the school,” a teacher recounted.

The WBCS officer reported the alleged incident to the police after his wife reached home. In the morning, the woman and her daughter had come to the school with two police escorts. She returned home after her daughter entered her class and was back in the afternoon to pick her up.

Police sources said the woman told the investigating officers that she had asked the two police escorts to stand outside the campus before she went in and waited with the other guardians for her daughter to step out.

“According to her statement, a fellow guardian spotted blood trickling from what appeared to be a slash on her right arm. She said she saw the blood first and then felt the pain,” a police officer said.

“It seems to be a blade or razor injury,” the doctor who examined the woman said when Metro asked him about the nature of the wound.

A police team visited the school to collect CCTV footage recorded by at least one of the 14 cameras installed on the campus.

Apart from the three drivers, the owner of the travel agency that supplies vehicles to the pool car service was questioned. Raids were carried out in the adjoining Duttabad slum later, but nobody was arrested.

The WBCS officer was questioned at the Bidhannagar police headquarters in the presence of his lawyer. “I was accusing the police of inaction initially. Now that all this has happened under police protection, I have nothing left to say,” he said before entering the police chamber.

Arnab Ghosh, deputy commissioner of the detective department, said the officer was asked about his life, including any enemies he might have made. He was advised not to leave the city without informing the cops.

Investigators are looking for a woman who had worked as a domestic help with the family for several years until last November, when she quit after a tiff.

A male domestic help who works in a flat in the same building is “under surveillance”.