3 Sentenced to 20 Years In Prison for raping Japanese tourist

Three persons were on Friday sentenced to 20 years imprisonment by a court in Jaipur for raping a Japanese tourist on the Jaipur-Ajmer National Highway in February.

Ajit Singh Choudhary, 25, had introduced himself as a guide, fluent in English, he befriended her and offered to show her more spots, after which she agreed to accompany him on his bike. He has taken the 20-year-old woman to an isolated spot far from Jaipur, where he and the others raped her on February 9 this year.

A fast-track court found Ajit and his accomplices, Abdul Wahid and Abrar, guilty under Section 376 (D) of the Indian Penal Code, which was amended after the December 2012 gang rape of a paramedic on a Delhi bus. Under the amended law, the minimum punishment for gang rape is 20 years in jail. Earlier, the minimum punishment was 10 years in jail.

The Japanese student left India for home in April after recording her statement in the case. She also said her iPhone and around Rs 4,000 were missing.

Several such assaults have occurred earlier in Rajasthan, a favourite holiday destination for foreign tourists. Their number was 1.53 million in 2014, up from 1.43 million the previous year.

Another Japanese lady was raped in 2006 by the owner of a guesthouse. He was sentenced to seven years. The same year, Bitti Mohanty, the son of a top Odisha police officer, raped a German research scholar. He was sentenced to seven years but jumped parole and was arrested years later from Kerala, working in disguise as a bank technician. In 2005, a 47-year-old German was kidnapped and raped by two auto-rickshaw drivers in Jodhpur. The accused were handed a life term.