Amid Una and Mayawati outrage, Haryana Dalit girl's second rape evokes muted response
While the second rape of a 20 year old in Rohtak has been reported widely by the international media, the case has found little space in India's mainstream media
The atrocities against Dalits in Gujarat's Una town sparked outrage in the Parliament last week. But the alleged gang rape of a Dalit college girl in a town some 66 kms from the national capital evoked only muted response.
The victim who was first raped in 2013 has been allegedly raped for the second time by a gang of five.
Two of the perpetrators are those who had raped her three years ago and are facing trial for the first crime .
The duo along with three others are reported to have raped her again after they were granted bail.
On July 13, the five accused reportedly kidnapped her while she was standing near her college in Rohtak, drugged, raped and dumped her in a remote location, police sources said.
The second rape is said to be a revenge action for pursuing the case against them.
The rape victim who cannot be named for legal reasons is now admitted in a hospital in Rohtak.
She called for “stringent action” against the culprits and they “should not roam scot-free as they are dangerous to society," the BBC quoted her as saying.
Condemning the heinous crime a top UN official said that the incident underlines “the heinous culture of impunity.”
“The reported gangrape of a young Dalit woman in India by the same five men who had raped her three years ago underlines the heinous culture of impunity that surrounds violence against girls and women,” UNICEF Principal Gender Advisor Anju Malhotra said in a statement.
Malhotra also emphasized that the outrage against the inhuman act is not enough.
"We need action now to end this brutality that has become routine and to give the victims of violence the justice and protection they deserve,” she added.
So far, the Haryana police have arrested three of five alleged to have kidnapped and raped her.
The rape survivor was reportedly found her in an unconscious state on the fateful day at Sukhpura Chowk . Family members had begun to look for when she did not return home from college at the usual time.
The 20 year-old girl had confirmed to the police that the same men had raped her in 2013.
"I know them very well. I only want justice. They should be hanged. It's not just only about me or anybody else's daughter. These people are dangerous," she said.
The kin of the victim claimed that they have lost their faith in the police, as they favour the accused.
The victim’s cousin, who earlier converted into Buddhism after he faced severe caste discrimination, said it took police seven days to arrest three among the five accused, even after she identified her tormentors.
“The accused were all roaming about here. We pleaded before the police. But their bias was obvious. We are being victimised because we are from a lower caste," he told BBC.
There are allegations that the police took up the case only eight days after the alleged rape.
Citing CCTV footage and location of their mobile phones police claimed that the accused were not in Rohtak city on July 13.
This fact is also been stated by the family of the accused. According to documents produced by the kin of the accused, two of them were at Bhiwani and one was in Ambala while the other was in Kurukshetra. The authenticity of the documents could not be independently verified.
The victims family claim that they have been threatened and were under pressure to withdraw the case against the accused. The family who were living in Bhiwani, had shifted to Rohtak after the first rape in 2013.
“We used to live in Bhiwani before. After the incident we fled to Rohtak to save ourselves from these men. I wanted to educate my children, the victim’s mother was quoted as saying by the Quint.
The accused is reported to have offered Rs. 5 million to the family of the girl, to drop the case against them, the brother of the victim said.
Despite being poor, the family will not compromise and has resolved to pursue the case, he said.