A five-year-old Dalit girl was picked up from her house while sleeping, allegedly raped and left in a field with serious injuries in her private parts in Uttar Pradesh’s Hapur district, police said Saturday. The incident was reported early in the morning from Pilakhua police station area of the district.
Her parents found the victim lying unconscious in a pool of blood from a field near her house. She was taken to a local hospital, from where doctors referred her to the Meerut Medical College. The doctors confirmed that the minor had been sexually assaulted. The victim had to undergo a surgery and her condition is said to be stable and out of danger, police said.
Police are probing the role of “a close relative” in the crime, said sources. They claimed the girl’s parents were hiding facts about the incident.
On the other hand, the victim’s parents, who are daily wage labourers, alleged that after finding the girl, they kept calling the police control room for over two hours but got no response. They then walked to the police station, carrying the victim.
Angry over the incident, locals blocked NH 24 Saturday morning. Senior police and administrative officials rushed to the spot. The protesters relented only after a case was registered and they were assured that the culprits would be nabbed soon.
According to SHO Pilakhua, S B Singh, the family of seven, including the girl and her four siblings, was sleeping outside the house on Friday night.
The father woke up late in the night and found the minor girl missing from the cot, where she had been sleeping with her elder sister. The family launched a hunt and found her lying unconscious in a pool of blood in a field barely 200 metres away from the house.
Talking to The Sunday Express, the victim’s father alleged that he called the PCR number 100 at 12:15 am, but no one responded. He claimed that he kept calling on the number till 2 am and later decided to carry his injured daughter to the police station on his own.
“I also made calls to a videographer, so that he could take pictures of the spot, but he did not respond. The police sent us to Hapur district hospital after formalities,” he alleged.
SP Hapur, Alankrita Singh, said the girl has undergone a surgery.
However, no other injuries were found on other parts of her body, she added. “The doctors have confirmed sexual assault on the minor. We have lodged an FIR against an unidentified person on charges of rape, and under POCSO Act and SC/ST Act. We are trying to trace the accused,” the SP added.
“The girl has told police that the accused made her sit on his lap, which shows that some close relative is involved in the crime. We are waiting for the girl to recover and give a statement before taking any action,” said a senior official.
According to police sources, the statement given by the girl’s parents appeared to be “suspicious” as the father claimed no one saw the accused, while a 19-year-old step-brother of the victim told police that he had seen some persons taking the girl away in the night. The youth, however, could not give any reply when asked why he kept mum when he saw the girl being carried away, said sources.
The incident comes barely a week after a mother and daughter were brutally raped on the Bulandshahr highway, resulting in widespread protests.