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Differently Abled Woman Allegedly Raped Repeatedly By Four Army Men

The deaf and mute woman filed several complaints about sexual abuse to hospital authorities.

A deaf and mute woman was allegedly raped by four Army jawans multiple times between 2015 and 2017 at Military Hospital, Kirkee, in Pune, reported Newslaundry.

The woman made her first verbal complaint immediately after she was raped for the first time in January 2015. However, no action was taken against the accused and she was only told that an inquiry was being conducted.

On Tuesday, October 16, the woman filed a police complaint against the four Army personnels with the help of an Indore-based NGO Anand Service Society.

According to the first information report (FIR) registered at Khadki police station, the woman joined the hospital on July 7, 2014 and was first raped after six months of joining, in January 2015.

The FIR read, “I was working on the night shift in my ward and was waiting outside the washroom for a lady patient. The time was around 11 pm and Haroon Rashid (rank: Naik), the wardmaster of a different ward, came to me and forcefully dragged me inside another bathroom. He forcefully stripped me and then raped me. I couldn’t cry for help as I am deaf and mute. After coming out of the bathroom I went to the ward in-charge and others and tried to explain the incident using sign language but unfortunately, they couldn’t understand me.”

“A day later, I approached nursing assistant Mohammad Muthazim, who was a friend of Haroon Rashid, and tried to inform him about the incident. He gave me his mobile number.” She sent a message to Muthazim explaining what had happened with her. “Muthazim messaged me saying he is going to help me and asked me to meet him at the hospital in the evening; he also said he is going to call Haroon there,” the FIR added.

She then met Muthazim and Haroon at an old family ward at 10 pm. “Muthazim told me, ‘We are army personnel and you are a civilian, nothing will happen to us but [you] can lose your job. We will give you abortion pills and it’s better [that] you keep your mouth shut.’”

Muthazim threatened to circulate the messages she had sent to him unless she kept quiet. “He forcefully took me inside the washroom there and raped me. I was frightened and afraid that I will lose my job and didn’t tell anyone about it at that time. However, two days later, Muthazim came and raped me again inside a bathroom after threatening to circulate the messages. After raping me for the second time, he continued texting me but I stopped talking to him.”

According to the FIR, a few months later, the woman was raped again by two other jawan. “Around six months later, somewhere in the month of June 2015, I was assigned duty at ICU JRC Ward and was working on the night shift along with another ward assistant, Ravindra Singh. While I was engaged in work, Singh came near me and then forcefully hugged and kissed me. He took out his mobile and showed me my photo,” the FIR read.

Singh threatened to show the picture to her husband, family and hospital staff. “For the next 15 days, he continued raping me after threatening to circulate my videos. I even tried to inform about his acts to hospital staff but was unable to explain to them.”

15 days later, the victim was assaulted by a fourth Army jawan, identified as Ahirwal, after she assigned the morning shift at the pediatric ward. The FIR says, “When I used to go to the pantry to take tea, Ahirwal used to grab my hand and touch my private parts. I reported his acts to the senior staff using sign language, who in turn reported it to the senior registrar who then gave [him] a punishment to carry luggage in the hospital for 15 days. However, he didn’t mend his ways and continued molesting me on different occasions even after that.”

According to the NL report, the victim complained to the hospital authorities several times but they were never taken seriously.

Speaking to NL, the victim said that during an internal hospital inquiry, “The committee used to ask me to speak and not talk in sign language. I am mute and deaf—how can I speak? They called an interpreter who was unable to understand me properly and used to ask me why I’ve reported the incident so late. I have reported my ordeal many times, but the staff and seniors were unable to understand me. Even during the inquiry, only two of the Army men came there.”

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