A seven-year-old girl was allegedly sexually assaulted by her father’s colleague in Nand Nagari area of north-east Delhi on Thursday.

The accused, identified as Jamal (25), has been arrested.

He was not only closely acquainted with the child’s family but had visited the victim’s house often. The mother of the child told The Statesman, “I asked my daughter to go and collect money from a local shopkeeper. But when she returned she was in a lot of pain and when I asked her about the pain she revealed what had happened to her.”

“She said that when she reached the shop, Jamal spotted her and asked her to accompany him to an abandoned spot promising to give her candy. He later sexually assaulted her and fled the spot,” the mother added.

After the incident the accused told the girl not to reveal the incident to anyone and threatened her with dire consequences. “We had good relations with Jamal. Our daughter often went out with him. We never expected such an act from him. We have known him for the past 2 years,” said the mother.

According to police, the girl was taken for a medical examination and a local NGO was brought in to counsel her. The incident was reported by the girl’s mother at Nand Nagari police station. The girl studies in the third standard in a Government school near Sundar Nagari.

On the basis of the complaint, the police later traced the accused from Meerut. “During interrogation he confessed to the crime.  He also revealed that he used the Loni route to escape to Meerut. He has been produced before a court and sent to jail,” an investigating officer said.