A day after a teenage girl was brutally stabbed to death on a street in Maharashtra's Pune city, police arrested the 22-year-old main accused and detained three other minors here in connection with the case, officials said on Wednesday.
According to the police, the murder was a fall-out of a "one-side love affair" by a distant relative of the 14-year-old girl, who was a class 8 student.
Maharashtra Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar, who is also the Pune district guardian minister, on Wednesday termed the incident as "extremely reprehensible" and a "disgrace to humanity".
According to police, the girl was on her way to kabaddi practice at Yash Lawns in Bibewadi area around 5.45 pm when the four accused came on a motorcycle.
While two remained on the motorbike, the other two, including the 22-year-old, allegedly attacked her with sharp weapons multiple times on her throat and other body parts, they said.
The attack was so brutal that the girl died on the spot, Bibewadi police station's senior inspector Sunil Zaware had said.
"We have arrested the 22-year-old main accused and three other juveniles who were involved in the case and further investigation is going on," Pune Police Commissioner Amitabh Gupta told PTI on Wednesday.
Zaware said the 22-year-old accused, identified as Shubham Bhagwat, is a distant relative of the girl and used to stay at her house.
"As he had developed one-sided love for the girl, her parents asked him to leave the house," the official said.
State Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar had on Tuesday condemned the brutal act and asked the police to take prompt action.
On Wednesday, Pawar in a statement said the incident was "highly reprehensible" and a "disgrace to humanity".
He said in a civilised city like Pune, the brutal murder of the minor girl while playing on a ground is a "serious sign of social degradation".
"It is time to think seriously about ending this anti-social mentality," he said.
The murder has made everyone's head hang in shame, said Pawar, who is the MLA from Baramati in Pune.
"Henceforth, not letting such an incident happen to any girl again will be the true tribute to the late girl," he said, adding that police have been directed to take stern action in the case.