Rapist Meghalaya policeman untraceable

Shillong, July 15 (IANS) A Meghalaya police officer accused of raping two minor sisters has remained untraceable since last month as his family members have not been cooperating with investigators, an official said Monday.

Nurul Islam, who was in charge of the Ampati police station, went into hiding June 2 after escaping from a police quarter at Tura town in the West Garo Hills. He allegedly raped the two minor sisters in March.

"He (Nurul) is still on the run and we have no specific information about his whereabouts," Ramachandran Muthu, district police chief of South West Garo Hills, told IANS Monday.

"Our team has gone to two-three places in Assam where we suspected Islam to be hiding but we have not been able to trace him," said Muthu.

Islam's wife and relatives were questioned to get information about his whereabouts, police said.

"They (family members) are not cooperating with us and that's why we have not been able to trace Islam," Muthu said.

Following Nurul's escape, a deputy superintendent of police, a sub-inspector and three constables were placed under suspension.

The National Commission for Protection of Child Rights slammed Meghalaya Police for their inability to track down the absconding policeman.

Chief Minister Mukul Sangma admitted that there were "lapses" on the part of police in not being able to arrest Islam.

Ampati, the assembly constituency of the chief minister, is 375 km from the state capital.

While a non-bailable arrest warrant has been issued against Islam, Muthu said a petition had been filed in a court to declare the suspended officer a proclaimed offender.

Islam allegedly raped a 14-year-old at the Ampati police station March 13. On March 31, he raped her sister, 17, at gun point at their house. The officer allegedly threatened to kill both of them if they dared to inform anyone.

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