Rape whiff in Dalit girl murder in heartland
An 11-year-old Dalit girl whose parents had stepped out for work at night was found murdered on Saturday in a Bundelkhand village, triggering protests amid allegations that she may have been raped too after being abducted from home.
Police said the minor victim was asleep on the veranda of her house in Shivani village under Kurara police station in Hamirpur district of Uttar Pradesh when the accused kidnapped her on Friday night.
Police sources said it appeared that more than one person could have been involved in the crime.
The girl was alone at home as her parents had gone to a nearby brick kiln after having dinner. Her body was found in a field near a graveyard after the villagers woke up in the morning on Saturday.
The police reached the spot around 8am but the agitated villagers, who blamed the force’s inefficiency for the crime and demanded compensation for the parents, didn’t let them take the body away till 2pm.
“I had gone to the brick kiln in a neighbouring village with my wife to work there in the night. The villagers informed me in the morning,” the victim’s father told local reporters.
“We always sleep on the veranda during summer and never thought such a crime could be committed in our village. Anybody can make out that she was raped before being murdered. There were no clothes on her body,” said the father who was also on dharna with the crowd.
“The villagers have said the protest would be restarted if the killers are not arrested within 24 hours.”
Late in the afternoon, Hemraj Meena, superintendent of police, said the situation was peaceful in the area.
“We hope to arrest the culprits soon. We have formed five police teams to identify and arrest the killers and hope to succeed soon,” the officer, who was at the spot for a long time trying to convince the villagers to let the police take the body for the post-mortem, added.
Rape can be confirmed only after the post-mortem, Meena added.
Abhishek Prakash, the district magistrate of Hamirpur, said: “We have assured the people of quick action in the case and informed the victim’s family that the government would provide them financial assistance.”
The DM has formed a five-member team of doctors for the post-mortem. The report would be available by Sunday.