Gang Rape in Rohtak, India Has the Whole Country Shaken

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Just days after the Indian Supreme Court upheld the death penalty they awarded four of the convicts from the 2012 Delhi Gang Rape case, another similar assault left a young Dalit woman dead. Her name has not yet been released.

The victim’s family had reported her missing a week ago in Haryana. The local police, they said, did nothing to help them find their 20-year-old daughter. Only a few days after she was reported missing, officials found her body. She had suffered blunt force trauma that left her skull shattered as well as a series of horrific rapes.

“The findings suggest that it was a brutal rape and murder,” Dr. SK Dhatterwal, head of the forensic medicine department at the Post Graduate Institute of Medical Sciences in Rohtak, told the Hindustan Times.

The family identified eight people who may have been involved, including a man named Sumit and a handful of his relatives. Three months before the victim was found dead, her family had lodged complaints against Sumit who had threatened the victim for refusing his advances. No action had been taken at that time.

“He (Sumit) used to waylay my daughter and intimidate her with a pistol. Finally, she slapped him a few days ago out of exasperation,” the mother of the victim said. “He said he will come back for revenge, which he did. Had police arrested Sumit when we lodged a complaint against him months ago, this would not have happened.”

The police have gone back and forth with Indian media about whether the previous complaints were verbal or written and whether they were withdrawn, but it’s clear there was a pattern of harassment that escalated to rape, torture, and murder.

Many in India are seeing echoes of the infamous Delhi Gang Rape case from 2012 in which a young woman was also brutally raped by a group of men and ultimately succumbed to her wounds. Congress President Sonia Gandhi has said the case highlights a need to revisit women’s safety laws.

The case is still being investigated.

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