Police on Thursday detained four persons who are suspected to be involved in the alleged rape of a 15-year-old Dalit schoolgirl in Vijayapura city in north Karnataka on December 19. Six persons are wanted in the case, among them a schoolmate of the victim, whom the girl’s father has named as the main accused. Of the four detained on Thursday in Vijayapura district, some could be minors, said the police. The school friend of the victim is yet to be apprehended.
While the family has said the girl and her relative, another minor girl, were abducted on December 19 when they were returning home from school, the police have not elaborated on the matter yet.
The Vijayapura police have, however, registered a case of sexual assault against the schoolmate and his friends under sections of the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act as well as sections dealing with kidnapping, wrongful restraint, gangrape and murder under the Indian Penal Code.
Karnataka Chief Minister Siddaramaiah, who was touring the Vijayapura district when the incident occurred on Tuesday, asked the state police chief to order an investigation by the CID into the alleged rape and murder.
The crime occurred in the Majunath Nagar area of Vijayapura on the afternoon of December 19.
According to a complaint registered with Adarsh Nagar police by the victim’s father, she was kidnapped by a schoolmate from an upper-caste community and his friends on December 19 while she was returning home with the relative.
The police complaint said the girls were taken away by the youths in a two-wheeler and an autorickshaw. It is unclear what happened to the second girl.
The victim was taken to a house in Vijayapura city and allegedly raped and killed by the youths, the compliant said.
The police, after preliminary investigation, said the girl was acquainted with the schoolmate who has been named by her father as the main accused. “There are reports that the boy and the girl were in a relationship,” a Vijayapura police officer said.
The police officer said that on December 19, the boy took the girl on his bike to the home of his aunt, who is a widow. According to the police source, the girl died while she was in that house.
The police source said that after the girl collapsed, the boy and some of his friends tried to revive her but failed.
The police said that there was evidence to indicate that the boy had sexual intercourse with the girl. “We are awaiting the post-mortem report to ascertain how the death of the girl happened, whether it was due to suffocation or some other reason,’’ a police officer said.