A tourist in her late forties from West Bengal, who had come to Digha Beach, was allegedly raped in a lodge at Chandaneswar area in Balasore district last night. She reached the nearby railway station in the evening after spending the day at the beach but missed a train going to the neighbouring state. She was waiting for the next train when a youth offered her a place to stay at night.
The culprit took the victim to Sita Hotel in Odisha, which is about 8 km away, “He spoke to me respectfully and said I was like an aunt to him. He said his name was Aakash and he was just 30. So, I did not suspect anything amiss and I agreed to sleep in the same room with him,” the tourist said, adding that she had been raped a few hours later around midnight.
“After raping me, he warned me against trying to leave the room and said nobody in the area would understand Bengali,” the woman said. The youth fled with Rs 5,000 and her mobile phone early in the morning.
She immediately lodged a complaint at Talasari Marine Police Station. The woman lives alone since her husband died said takes solo trips frequently.
“I had come to Digha on Sunday morning. Hotels do not give rooms to individual people here, that is why I accepted that man’s offer,” she said. A string of suicides by single tourists a few years ago, led the Digha-Shankarpur Hoteliers’ Association to frame a regulation of not letting out rooms to single people unless they have police approval.
Digha officer-in-charge Basuki Banerjee said: “We will extend all possible help to Odisha police in investigating the case.” He added that the Digha police were scanning CCTV footage to identify the accused.
Sources at Talsari station confirmed on Monday that a case had been registered and an investigation started. Meanwhile, the culprit’s documents submiited at the hotel turned out to be fake.