It was within 24 hours of arriving in Punjab for the first time in search of work that the parents of a five-year-old girl, who was gang-raped in Dasuya town of Hoshiarpur district, faced their worst nightmare. Not only had the child been gang-raped but she was found walking along the railway line in a critical condition on Tuesday morning while several stray dogs were chasing her.
At PGI, where the victim is being treated after being referred by Hoshiarpur hospital, the father, who was in shock, regretted his decision of coming to Punjab. Though doctors operated upon the girl, her condition continued to remain critical.
“I decided to come to Punjab thinking I would earn, feed my family and live happily. But I think I took a wrong decision,” said the man outside the PGI’s Advanced Paediatrics Centre (APC), where his daughter is admitted.
Recalling Monday night’s incident, when her daughter went missing, the man said that there was a power cut plunging the entire area into complete darkness. “My daughter was outside our room. When electricity was restored after sometime, I couldn’t find her anywhere,” he said.
The victim’s family hails from Uttar Pradesh. Her father has started working as a daily wager with a local scrap dealer.
After the search on Monday night failed to yield any result, the girl’s family contacted police and registered a missing complaint.
“We couldn’t find her anywhere at night. On Tuesday morning, she was found by someone at the railway track and then I was informed. Her clothes were torn and she was crying and shocked. Initially, she was taken to a local hospital there which then referred her to PGI,” said the father.
Doctors from the Department of Paediatric Surgery, PGI, said the condition of the minor was critical and she had suffered severe injuries in the abdomen. “If she survives, we will have to conduct multiple surgeries,” said a doctor adding that medical tests at the hospital in Hoshiarpur have confirmed that the five-year-old was raped.
The man said he wants her daughter to recover fast and the police should arrest the accused immediately. “All those responsible for committing this act should be hanged. How could they do this to a minor girl,” he said.
The SHO of Dasuya PS, Jagdish Raj Attri, said they have rounded up several people but no one has been arrested yet. He added that raids were on to nab the accused. A case has been registered under relevant sections of the POCSO Act and Indian Penal Code.