Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Teenage girl says gang-raped for 10 days, forced to eat meat: Police

A 16-year-old girl in Uttar Pradesh’s Muzaffarnagar district has accused four men of gang-raping her for 10 days, trying to force her to eat meat and pressuring her to convert. Police registered a case on the basis of the girl’s complaint (filed on Monday), Mohammad Rizwan, circle officer in Bhopa, said on Tuesday.

“She has named four youths in her complaint. Raids are being conducted to nab the accused,” he added. All four are from a minority community. Activists of some Hindutva organisations and local leaders of the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party reached Bhopa police station after news of the girl’s complaint spread and demanded immediate arrest of the accused.

In her complaint, the girl stated she was waiting for a bus to go to her maternal uncle’s house on September 6 when the four youths, whom she knew, offered her a lift in their car. They told her they were headed in the same direction and she accepted their offer. She alleged that as soon as she entered the car, the youths put a gun to her head and abducted her.

She said the four youths took her to different places and repeatedly raped her, tried to force her to eat meat, due to which she vomited and her health worsened. She also alleged that they kept telling her she would have to change her religion. According to the girl, the four men set her free on September 16 on the outskirts of her village.

She alleged that they threatened her if she told anyone about what they had done, they would kill her and her family members. However, the girl shared her ordeal with her parents, who informed the police.

Police registered a case against the accused under relevant sections of the Indian Penal Code and under the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (Pocso) Act. Meanwhile, a tweet from the official account of Muzaffarnagar police on Tuesday evening denied the force-feeding of meat.

Bhopa circle officer Rizwan said, “We are investigating the case. Nothing can be said with clarity as of now, but prima facie it appears there might be some exaggeration in the application that the girl gave.” Police did not immediately share details of whether the girl’s parents or other family members had approached them during the period she was allegedly missing.

Ajay Sahdev, superintendent of police (rural), said, “Investigations are on and the picture will soon be clear.”

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