Warangal: A nine-month-old infant was raped and killed by a man at Tailor Street in Hanamkonda, Warangal Urban district, during the early hours of Wednesday. The man was identified as Kolipaka Praveen, 28, who is currently in police custody.
According to Warangal commissioner of police Dr V. Ravinder, the child Srihitha was sleeping with her parents and grandparents on the terrace of their house. The assailant climbed up the stairs and abducted the baby. He took her to a secluded location, two streets away, and sexually assaulted her. When she cried in pain, he gagged her.
The parents of the baby who woke up at about 2.30 am found the baby was missing. They raised an alarm and started searching for her. Neighbours joined in the search. The baby was finally found by her maternal uncle Bharath with the assailant. Praveen started running on seeing Bharath and threw the baby onto the road. Bharath chased and caught hold of Praveen with the help of others. They beat him up and handed him over to the police.
The baby was alive but unconscious when she was taken to a hospital in Hanamkonda. The doctors tried to revive her but in vain. After the doctors pronounced her dead, she was shifted to the MGM hospital mortuary for post-mortem.
Srihitha’s father works in Hyderabad and the family resides there. She and her mother were in Hanamkonda to spend the summer at her grandparents’ house.
Mr Ravinder said a case has been registered under Sections 366, 302, 376(a), 376(ab), 379 and section 5(m) of the Indian Penal Code, read with Section 6 of the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act.
Parents, locals seek capital punishment
Kolipaka Praveen, who raped and murdered a nine-month-old girl at Hanamkonda, must be given capital punishment demanded the family members of Srihitha, the child rights commission and local people living in the locality.
A huge protest demonstration was held outside the Hanamkonda police station on Wednesday. People from various organisations and different walks of life came in support of Srihitha’s family and demanded the assailant Praveen be encountered in public.
The family members first refused to take the baby from the MGM hospital mortuary saying they will conduct the final rites of their daughter only after Praveen is dead.
A tense situation prevailed as the protestors blocked traffic at the Hanamkonda bus station junction. Police arrested the protesters.
Padma, a neighbour of the stricken family, said Praveen, who works as a cleaner in a nearby hotel, has a record of misbehaviour with local women. He was also booked for thieving several times.
“He would sometimes sleep on anybody’s terrace. When we questioned him, he used to be rude with us. Even after we complained regarding him the police did not take any action. The child would have been alive today had the police taken action against him before.”