Official who didn’t act on Ankita Bhandari’s missing complaint suspended

DEHRADUN: Vaibhav Pratap Singh, the patwari who didn’t act on a missing complaint filed by Ankita Bhandari’s family on September 19 has been suspended, Pauri Garhwal district magistrate Vijay Kumar Jogdande said on Tuesday.

Orders to suspend the patwari were issued after an inquiry by the sub-divisional magistrate (SDM) indicted him on September 23. The SDM’s report added that multiple complaints had been received against the patwari and he was issued “oral warnings”.

Jogdande said the patwari, who also doubles as a sub-inspector of the revenue police, was suspended for “negligence” in performing his duties by not filing the complaint given by the father of the receptionist woman on time.

The family of the victim woman alleged that Vaibhav Pratap Singh, revenue sub-inspector, Udaipur Palla-2, Yamkeshwar tehsil, didn’t take their complaint despite repeated requests.

The girl had gone missing on September 18. The revenue official received information about it on September 19 but he sat on the complaint. The official took the complaint from the accused Pulkit Arya, who filed a missing complaint on September 20 to mislead the police and went on leave for four days, claiming that his father was unwell.

The matter was transferred from the revenue police to regular police on September 22.

On September 23, police arrested the three accused, including the expelled BJP leader Vinod Arya’s son Pulkit Arya, who revealed that they allegedly killed the receptionist and threw her body into the Chilla canal in Rishikesh. The woman was being pressurised to enter into prostitution, police said. Her body was recovered from the canal on September 24.

DM Jogdande said the delay in action in the case shows the official’s negligence. The DM also ordered SDM Lansdowne to conduct a departmental probe into the allegations against the revenue official and submit a report to his office. Earlier, the government suspended another patwari, Vivek Kumar, in the case.

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