Prakash refuses bravery award for fighting Ruchika case

Prakash refuses bravery award for fighting Ruchika caseChandigarh, Dec 28 - Anand Prakash and his family members, who have been fighting to get justice for Ruchika Girhotra ever since she was molested by former Haryana top cop S. P. S. Rathore 19 years ago, Monday refused to accept a bravery award from M. S. Bitta, chairman of the All India Anti-Terrorist Front.

"Our job is not done, we are still yearning for justice and an exemplary punishment for the accused S. P. S. Rathore. Till we get whole justice we are not liable for getting any award or anything," Prakash said here.

Bitta reached Prakash's home accompanied by Rukhsana, who had killed Lashkar-e-Taiba commander Abu Osama in Jammu and Kashmir's Rajouri district in September.

Bitta wanted to honour Prakash, his wife Madhu and their daughter Aradhana, the lone witness in the case. But Prakash courteously refused to accept the award.

"So far only little success that we attained is that court has convicted Rathore of molestation but at the same time the quantum of sentence is very little. The court should also try him under abetment to suicide charge."

A special CBI court in Chandigarh had Dec 21 held Rathore, former Haryana director general of police (DGP), guilty of molesting 14-year-old Ruchika in Panchkula town Aug 12, 1990 and sentenced him to a six-month prison term. The budding tennis player had committed suicide three years after the incident.

"We were alone fighting this case for the last 19 years so there was very bleak hope for justice but now when we are getting support from all sections of society we are assured of true justice ahead," Prakash said.

Said Bitta: "We want the police to write the complaint again and start verifying the facts and evidences pertaining to this case afresh. There should be a complete inquiry of officials right from a clerk to a top official. This case also raises questions on the working of the Intelligence Bureau (IB) as it failed to provide inputs about Rathore."

He added that he felt bad that he had missed highlighting this case earlier.

"I would be a more happy man if I had joined Anand Prakash and his family earlier. Now they are not alone, we are with them. Media has also played an instrumental role in taking this case near a logical end. They have taken this case to national and international level," Bitta said.

"This is also a kind of terrorism that has destroyed many homes and families. I am sure that taking inspiration from this case many more victims will come out and will raise voice against tainted officials," he said.

Nineteen-year-old Rukhsana also demanded more punishment for Rathore.

"I am feeling very bad for Ruchika. Such kind of incident should not happen with any girl. Now we will fight together and we want very strict punishment for the main accused," she said. (IANS)




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