FIR against ZEE news for disclosing Delhi gang-rape key witness' identity

New Delhi, Jan 5 (ANI): The Delhi Police has lodged a case against Zee News channel for revealing the identity of the gang-rape victim by carrying an interview of her friend who was the lone witness in the case.

Delhi Police spokesperson Rajan Bhagat said that the case will be filed in the Vasant Vihar Police Station under Section 228 (A) of the Indian Penal Code, which pertains to disclosure of identity of victims of certain offences, including rape.

In the interview to the television channel, the person severely criticised the time taken by the police to respond and the indifference of the public while he and the girl lay on the road after being thrown out of the bus.

Passers-by left the gang-raped student lying unclothed and bleeding in the street for almost an hour, a male friend who was assaulted with her said on Friday (January 4) in his first public comments on the case that provoked a global outcry.

The 23-year-old student died in hospital two weeks after she was attacked on Dec. 16 in a private bus in New Delhi, prompting street protests over the Indian authorities' failure to stem rampant violence against women.

The graphic account from the man in a television interview is likely to add fuel to public anger over the death in a country where official statistics show one rape is reported every 20 minutes.

The woman's friend told the Zee News television network he was beaten unconscious with a metal bar by her attackers before the pair were thrown off the bus.

They lay in the street for 45 minutes before a police van arrived and officers then spent a long time arguing about where to take them, the man said.

"They threw us out of the bus near a flyover and also tried to crush us under the vehicle. We did not have any clothes. We waited there, hoping for someone to come to our aid. Desperate to seek help I waved at the traffic for quite some time, the autorickshaws (three wheelers), cars, motorcyclists slowed down after seeing us but did not stop.

"For more than 25 minutes no one stepped forward to help us. Then finally someone approached us and made a phone call to the police. Then three Police Control Room (PCR) vans came to us but the officials first started deciding over whose jurisdiction the case fell," the man said.

Rajan Bhagat said that the GPS records show the first police van reached the scene four minutes after it was called and took the man and the woman to hospital within 24 minutes.

Neither the woman nor her friend have been named. Five men were charged with her gang rape and murder on Thursday. A court is due to consider the charges on Saturday. (ANI)

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