A 15-year-old Dalit girl was allegedly set on fire in Bulandshahr on Tuesday morning and died at Delhi’s RML Hospital later in the day, the police said.
According to police, the girl was earlier allegedly raped by a local resident and the family was being pressured to withdraw her complaint.
The FIR filed by the family says seven people entered their home and set her ablaze using petrol.
In a video of the victim in a hospital, she can be heard purportedly saying, “There was an ongoing case of molestation by the same people who came today…”
Bulandshahr SSP Santosh Kumar Singh said: “In August, a girl was raped by a man. He was arrested. The accused is currently in jail. On Tuesday, we received information that the same girl has been set on fire under suspicious circumstances. Till 11 pm, it appeared she had attempted suicide. But as per the family’s complaint, seven people tried to immolate her.”
He said seven people have been booked and three arrested so far.
According to the victim’s family, those accused of setting her on fire are relatives and acquaintances of the accused, who is in prison for allegedly raping the minor. He was charged under POCSO and SC/SC Act.
The victim’s uncle said: “We were being threatened to withdraw the rape case and have a decision in the panchayat. Around 8.30 pm Monday, I received a call from an unknown number – they threatened and told the family to withdraw the case or face consequences. At 9.30 am Tuesday, when the girl’s parents were not at home, we were told that she was set on fire.”
The police are currently investigating links between the two incidents.
The victim’s family stated that her mother was in a different part of the neighborhood at the time of the incident and was cooking for guests on Bhai Dooj when the crime occurred. “We rushed her to a nearby hospital and they referred us to Bulandshahr. From there, we were asked to go to RML in Delhi,” the uncle said. “Doctors treated her for 15-20 minutes…she was declared dead.”
The victim’s father works as a mason.
The FIR names Sanjay, Banwari, Badan Singh, Veer Singh, Jaswant Singh, Gautam and Kajal. The police aid they live close to the victim’s home.
During the day, an FIR was filed under IPC Sections 307 (attempt to murder), 147 (rioting), 506 (criminal intimidation), 452 (trespass) and relevant Sections of SC/ST Act. The FIR will be updated with Section 302 (murder) after the victim died in the evening, the police said
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