Man, 24, abducts, marries 15-year-old girl, arrested

VELLORE: The Natrampalli police have arrested a 24-year-old man on charges of abducting a minor girl and marrying her. The man was arrested when he, along with the girl, 15, approached the police on Saturday, seeking protection from their families.

The police have also registered a case of arson following a complaint from the girl’s family. They stated that family members and relatives of M Gnanamani, who abducted the girl, set their house on fire when they questioned them about the girl’s whereabouts. The incident took place in the early hours of Saturday.

Inspector of police of the Natrampalli station Santhalingam said that Gnanamani and the girl were in a relationship. While the man belongs to Vanniyar caste, the girl is from Kuravar community. Both the families objected to their relationship.

On March 7, the girl went on missing from the house. The family looked for the girl but in vain. They then went to Gnanamani’s house on Thursday and questioned his family about the duo’s whereabouts (Gnanamani and the girl).

Irked over this, Gnanamani’s family members and relatives allegedly assaulted the girl’s brother-in-law Sakthivel, her siblings and family members, the police said.

“Gnanamani’s brother and 10 others came in two autos and a TATA Sumo in the early hours of Saturday. They assaulted my in-laws and set their thatched house on fire,” Sakthivel claimed.

Following this, the girl’s father, Ravi, lodged a police complaint against Gnanamani that he abducted his daughter. In the meantime, his son R Ajith Kumar lodged another police complaint against Gnanamani’s family that they set their house on fire.

The police registered a case under Section 366 (kidnapping, abduction or inducing woman to compel her marriage) of the IPC based on Ravi’s complaint, while the police invoked Section 436 (mischief by fire with intent destroy house) of the IPC on Kumar’s complaint.

Denying abduction of the girl, inspector of police Santhalingam said the girl and Gnanamani were in a relationship. Though she went with the man with her consent, they have arrested Gnanamani as the girl is a minor. “We have altered the section from 366 and booked a case against him under Pocso Act. The girl has been handed over to the government observation home,” said the inspector.

The police launched an investigation into the arson case.

Times of India

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