[ Saturday, June 17, 2006 12:19:29 am, TIMES NEWS NETWORK ]
GHAZIABAD/NEW DELHI: In a horrifying incident, two sisters suffered severe burns when an unidentified man threw acid on them in Kotgaon in Ghaziabad late on Thursday night.
The sisters were admitted to Lok Nayak Hospital in a critical condition. The elder, Anupama (20), has about 70% burns on the face, torso and legs. Doctors feel she may lose her eyesight. The younger sister, Shweta (18), is burnt chest downwards and is in shock.
The incident occurred in the Vijaynagar police station's Kotgaon Colony, about 11 pm on Thursday. The sisters were working at Motherson Sumi unit at Noida. They were dropped by their office bus a little away from their house on Thursday and were walking down when they allegedly met an acquaintance, Ravi.
According to the police, Ravi who had worked with the girls earlier, chatted with them for a few minutes before moving on. Having walked a few yards more, a man wearing a helmet emerged from the shadows and threw acid on the two girls. While Shweta ran ahead, Anupama turned around to see who it was and was splashed with more acid. The man fled when an alarm was raised.
Strangely, while the girls' maternal uncle named Ravi — a resident of Ashok Nagar — in the FIR as the one who attacked the girls with acid, their brother-in-law, D C Vashista, claimed that the assailant was another person. Vinit, the maternal uncle, said: "My nieces were walking home when one Ravi walked up to them wearing a helmet. He threw acid on them with the intention of killing the two."
Passersby rushed the victims to the local Shankar Lal Hospital, from where they were referred to LNJP.
Vashishta said: "Though Ravi wasn't the one to throw the acid, we suspected his involvement since he had no reason to be there and the chain of events seemed too co-incidental to not be of any significance. The police went to Ravi's place but he hasn't been home."
The family also emphasised strongly that the motive was not known and contrary to rumours, there was no romantic involvement. "The family is just being maligned by floating such stories but our girls are innocent and had nothing to do with Ravi or the attacker," added Vashishta.
The girls' father, a retired textile worker now involved with a security agency, has not been in town for some months.
According to Ghaziabad senior superintendent of police, Piyush Mordia: "It is likely this could be a case of unreturned affection. But we are not certain yet. We have not yet got much information from the victims. But we will nab the culprit very soon