New Delhi: Delhi Police have arrested nine people, including eight women, in the sexual assault case of a 20-year-old woman in the city’s Shahdara area. Two male minors were also apprehended in the case.
The incident occurred Wednesday when the woman was allegedly attacked by a group of people, including women, who tonsured and stripped the victim before blackening her face and parading her on the streets of the Shahdara area.
It was also alleged that the woman was gang-raped in a house in the same area. “We have so far arrested nine people and apprehended two minors,” Deputy Commissioner of Police (Shahdara district) R Sathiyasundaram told IANS.
According to the DCP, the two minors, who have been apprehended, were involved in s**xually assaulting the victim. The police have registered an FIR under relevant sections of the Indian Penal Code for gang-rape, kidnapping, illegal confinement, and physical assault of the woman.
“All possible help and counselling was provided to the victim. We took the matter very seriously,” said the DCP.
Source privy to the investigation told IANS that the victim woman used to live in the same locality till she got married a few years ago and then moved to some other area. “She is a mother of a two-year-old child,” said sources.
A man who used to live in her neighbourhood was in one-sided love with her. She had spurned his advances many a times. Last year, the same man had allegedly committed suicide by jumping in front of a train. His family blamed the victim woman for their son’s death and wanted revenge.
The DCP also confirmed that the crime prima facie seems due to some personal enmity, however, the cops are in the process of verifying the facts and allegations.
IANS was able to access the names of 7 people, all women, who were involved in the brutal crime. The accused women were identified as Shalu alias Mungeri, 36, Rajji, 40, Prerna, 18, Komal, 25, Varsha, 38, Priti, 36, all residents of Kasturba Nagar, Delhi and Baby, 40.
Soon after the incident, a video in which the victim women was being paraded on the streets with a blackened face and the mob cheering in the background went viral on social media forcing the Delhi Commission for Women (DCW) to take suo-motu cognisance of the said incident.
In the video, which was also shared by DCW chief Swati Maliwal, the victim woman was also made to wear a garland of slippers. Maliwal issued a notice to the Delhi Police in connection with the matter and said that it was the most unfortunate incident that was reported from the national capital.
“A woman was gang-raped by the accused, who deals in illicit liquor business. She was made to wear a garland of shoes. Her face was blackened and she was paraded in the area. Most unfortunate incident. I am writing to Delhi Police to provide security to the woman and her family and take strong action against the accused,” said Maliwal.
Maliwal, along with her team, met the victim at the hospital and recorded her statement.
She has assured all help to her.
Delhi Chief Minister also reacted to the horrific incident and asked Union Home Minister Amit Shah and Lieutenant Governor Anil Baijal to instruct Delhi Police to take strict action against all the accused. “This is very shameful. How did the criminals get so courageous? I urge the Union Home Minister and the Lieutenant Governor to instruct the police to take strict action and pay attention to the law and order situation. Delhiites will not tolerate such heinous crime and criminals at any cost,” said Kejriwal in a tweet.
Bharatiya Janata Party MP from east Delhi Gautam Gambhir said that he spoke to DCP Shahdara over the “barbaric assault on the 20 year old woman”. “Some arrests have been made & more will follow. I assure that these animals (men & women) will not be spared. Every kind of support will be provided to the survivor,” the parliamentarian said.