A man suspected of having raped a 22-year-old Dalit woman in Malout last month has been arrested, police claimed on Sunday — the second arrest made in the case since Friday. Police also claimed they found the vehicle used to abduct the woman — a Skoda car.Sunday’s arrest came two days after the prime suspect in rape case — Jagdeep Singh ‘Jojo’, who belongs to Kandukhera village, same as the victim — turned himself in.Malout DSP Manwinderbir Singh said: “During the questioning, Jagdeep Jojo, who is on three-day police remand, had yesterday named his accomplice as Sandeep Singh ‘Seepa’, who has been arrested from Malout town today. Besides, the Skoda car used to abduct the girl has also been recovered”.The Dalit woman was allegedly abducted and raped on March 25. Images of the crime are believed to show Singh dragging the girl from outside a computer centre on Indira Road, where she worked. The video shows the victim yelling for help as she is forcibly taken to a waiting car and a man and a woman running after the car to save her. The time stamp on the video shows 8.15 am.In their complaint made on March30, the woman’s parents claimed their daughter was forced into a vehicle, driven out of Malout, raped at a house in a village called Tappa Khera, and then dumped at Malout bus stand on March 25.The suspects have been booked for rape, abduction and wrongful restraint, among others.The woman’s parents provided them with the video when the police took no action.After being criticised for inaction, police added provisions of Prevention of Atrocities (Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribes) Act, 1989, to the previously registered complaint.Both National Commission for Scheduled Castes and the Punjab State Scheduled Caste Commission have demanded explanation for delay investigations.Kandukhera and Tappa Khera come under Lambi, Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal’s own assembly segment.Prime suspect Jagdeep Singh is believed to be a close aide of an influential politician of the segment. Singh has been accused of having offered the victim’s family Rs 20 lakh for “settling” the case.
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