Updated: February 9, 2015 3:53:57 pm
The 28-year-old woman whose naked, half-eaten body was found off the Rohtak-Hisar bypass on February 4 was a Nepali citizen under treatment for depression in India, and had come to Rohtak two months ago to live with her elder sister.
Her sister said she visited often, and had last stayed in Rohtak for one and a half years, working as a domestic help.
The autopsy of the woman has identified the cause of death as damage to the brain along with the rupture of vagina, rectum and anus, and said that the injuries were caused before her death.
Doctors said the woman had been assaulted with a stone and a piece of asbestos sheet as long as 16 cm, and there were “visible signs of struggle” indicative of “rape by multiple persons”. The head injury was caused by a heavy blunt object.
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A native of Nepal’s Vardia district, she is believed to have been killed on February 1, the same day as she went missing.
On Sunday, activists and residents of Rohtak blocked the Delhi-Rohtak highway protesting against police inaction and demanding that the accused be arrested and punished.
The caretaker of the fields in Bahu Akbarpur village where the woman’s body was found, 15 km from her sister’s house where she lived, informed the police. Both upper limbs of the woman were found chewed off.
The sister, who works as a domestic help, has been living in Rohtak for 20 years. She is married with two children. Her husband works at a factory nearby.
The victim was one among four siblings. Their parents live in Nepal where their father is a casual labourer.
The sister told The Indian Express that the victim went missing sometime on February 1 morning. “My 14-year-old son was at home studying while she was upstairs on the terrace. She had stomach ache and I told her to stay in the sun so that she would feel better. In the meantime, I left for work. Around 1.30 pm, my son called up and said she was not at home. We looked for her but there was no trace of her.”
According to her, the police ignored their requests for a probe and did nothing for three days.
“We went around asking neighbours. Our relative’s 12-year-old son told us he had seen her going towards the main road. He is too young, and not knowing she was under treatment, did not inform any one of us,” she said.
The victim’s brother, who has come down from Nepal, said she kept aloof and hardly talked to anyone. “In Nepal too she kept falling in and out of depression. Last year, we finally decided to get her regular treatment. A friend suggested a doctor in Nainital and since then she was on medication. I had purchased all her medicines when she told me she wanted to live with our sister for a while,” he said.
Crying, the sister said, “If this was a case of a woman from a higher strata of society, the police would have acted immediately. Is it because we are poor that the police refused to act?”
The Haryana Police has formed seven teams to investigate the case and announced a reward of Rs 1 lakh for anyone providing credible clues.
SP Rohtak Shashank Anand said, “We have some crucial leads but you must appreciate that this is a totally blind case. What is intriguing is the distance between the victim’s house and the spot where she was found. We are yet to find out how she was taken there.”
About the family’s charge that police delayed action, Anand said, “The family is upset. We cannot comment on what they allege. We would like to point out that a case of kidnapping was registered the day the family approached us.”
ADGP, Law and Order, Mohd Akeel also denied charges of inaction. “We began investigating as soon as the body was found… Even after eight days, we can find evidence.”
The autopsy cited the cause of death as “cranio-cerebral damage along with utero-vaginal rupture and rupture of large gut rectum and anus which are ante-mortem in nature, homicidal in manner”.
Dr S K Dhattarwal, Head of Forensic Medicine, PGIMS, Rohtak, who conducted the autopsy, said, “There was a foul smell emanating from the body. Two stones had been used to brutalise her private parts. We also found a condom inside her private parts. In all, there were nine injuries on her body.
Her scalp had been ripped apart, and her thighs and chest had contusions (suggestive of struggle), which indicate sexual assault. Her uterus, abdomen and intestines were torn, which indicates that the rape was by multiple persons.”
Dhattarwal, who claimed to have never seen such a case of brutality, said the stones found inside the woman were same as the ones lying around the area. “Our forensic team has collected samples from the area and it seems that after the woman was brutalised, she was thrown off a 7-ft-high wall to prevent her body from being seen by passersby.”
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