Pune, Jun 1 (PTI) Showing extraordinary courage, an eight-year-old daughter of an ex-serviceman not only fought back a 33-year-old Army jawan who tried to sexually assault her in a toilet of a moving train in Maharashtra in the early hours of Tuesday and threw her on tracks but also helped the police nab him by providing his description.
The alleged incident occurred on the Goa-Nizamuddin Express between Lonand and Salpa railway stations in Satara district in western Maharashtra, a senior officer said.
'The girl, a daughter of an ex-serviceman, was travelling to Delhi with her mother, father, sister and brother,' said Sadanand Wayse Patil, Superintendent of Police (Pune division), Government Railway Police (GRP).
The accused, later identified as Prabhu Malappa Uphar, allegedly picked up the girl while she was fast asleep on her berth and took her to the toilet, he said.
While the accused tried to sexually assault her, the girl woke up and resisted his advances and started shouting, the SP said.
The accused then told the girl that he was taking her back to her parents, but after coming out of the toilet, he pushed her down the moving train.
'Fortunately, the train was moving slowly due to the ghat section due to which the girl sustained less grievous injuries. On Tuesday morning, some locals spotted her lying on the railway tracks and took her to a hospital,' said Wayse- Patil.
At the hospital, the girl not only narrated the ordeal but also provided the description of the jawan man to the police which proved crucial.
'We then launched a search operation in the train and ordered that no one should get down from the train. At least 400 police and GRP constables boarded the train at various stations to ensure that the accused does not flee,' he said.
During the search, police identified at least 30 passengers whose description matched with the suspect.
'We short-listed four suspects out of the 30 and finally identified Uphar. He was apprehended when the train was near Bhusaval in north Maharashtra,' the officer said.
The girl, who sustained injuries on her legs and under the chin, was later reunited with her family.
Uphar is a jawan of Naik rank and posted at Jhansi in Uttar Pradesh. PTI SPK COR ARU NSK NSK