A 15-year-old girl was allegedly assaulted, tied to a pillar and her face blackened by her neighbour’s family who suspected her of having an affair with an youth from their household. The accused also allegedly cut the minor’s hair, tore her dress and poured kerosene on her in an attempt to set her ablaze, before she was rescued by her family and others.
The incident took place in Jamania area of Ghazipur district on Friday (February 26), police said.
The girl lodged a complaint on Saturday alleging that a panchayat was held in the village on Friday where her family was asked to enter into a compromise with the accused. She also alleged that the panchayat told her not to go to the police.
Following her complaint, an FIR was registered at Jamania police station and six persons, including three women, have been arrested, investigating officer in the case, sub-inspector (S-I) Kamal Kant Verma said. He said the victim’s statement will be recorded before the magistrate.
In her complaint, the victim said that she was returning from school on Friday when her neighbour Kitabul Nisha and latter’s daughter-in-law Shahjahan caught and forcibly dragged her into their house, the S-I said. She alleged that, Nisha’s sons Kalamu (29) and Salamu (24), latter’s wife Seema Begum, Kalamu’s cousin Shah Alam, and two minor girls from the family assaulted her and later tied her with a pillar. They also cut her hair, blackened her face and tore her school dress before pouring kerosene on her, the S-I said. The girl claimed in the complaint that on hearing her cries for help, her mother rushed to the place, where the accused abused the woman and threatened them with dire consequences. Meanwhile, villagers also arrived there and rescued them, the S-I said quoting the FIR.
Superintendent of Police, Ghazipur, Ram Kishore said the matter was placed before the village panchayat the same day. The panchayat reportedly pressured the girl and her family to compromise with the accused and asked them not to lodge a police complaint. However, some persons from the village took the girl to the police station on Saturday and got a case registered, he said, adding heavy police force has been deployed in the village to prevent any untoward situation.
The police have arrested six of the named accused while Shah Alam and two minor girls are yet to be caught.
The case has been registered under IPC sections 147 (rioting), 323 (voluntarily causing hurt), 504 (intentional insult with intent to provoke breach of peace), 506 (criminal intimidation), 354-B (assault or use of criminal force to woman with intent to disrobe) and 509 (word, gesture or act to insult the modesty of a woman). The police have also invoked Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act (POCSO) against the accused.
Senior sub-inspector, Jamania, Santosh Sinha said, “During questioning it came to light that the accused family suspected Kalamu of having an affair with the girl as he used to help her family financially. A day before the incident, Kalamu had reportedly assaulted his wife and his brother Aslam when they had inquired about his alleged affair with the girl”.