What Do We Do About UP’s Epidemic of Rape? 4 Minors Sexually Assaulted & Murdered in 3 Weeks

Crime

What Do We Do About UP’s Epidemic of Rape? 4 Minors Sexually Assaulted & Murdered in 3 Weeks

Illustration: Robin Chakraborty

A few days ago, a young girl went out to tend to her buffaloes in a village in Uttar Pradesh and didn’t return home. Two days later, on Wednesday, the police said they had found her body. In what would become the fourth horrific crime against minor girls in just three weeks in UP, the police said that she had been raped and murdered.

The 16-year-old’s body was recovered from the Varuna river in Jaunpur district, and bore numerous injury marks, reports said. Locals also alleged that acid had been poured on the upper half of her body, but the police have said they will wait for a post-mortem report before confirming what exactly had transpired.

“Prima facie it appears that the girl has been murdered. It appears that she was burnt with some substance, but its nature will be clear after a postmortem,” a senior police officer told NDTV.

To make matters worse, this incident follows a spate of barbaric crimes, specifically targeting minor girls, that have been making stomachs churn all through the last month.

News broke just two weeks ago that a man had kidnapped, raped, and tortured a six-year-old girl in Hapur district, barely 100 kilometers from the national capital Delhi. Two men were arrested the following week for assaulting and strangling a 13-year-old girl to death in Lakhimpur Kheri district.

Then again last Friday, another barbaric assault case was reported in Chief Minister Adityanath’s home constituency, Gorakhpur. Two men had raped a teenage girl before apparently singing her with cigarette butts, and leaving her in an unconscious state.

This series of shocking crimes has drawn condemnation online, from human rights groups to journalists to opposition leaders.

Congress General Secretary Priyanka Gandhi said the Uttar Pradesh government had completely failed to protect people.

“There is no fear of law in the minds of criminals. As a result of this, gruesome incidents of crime against women are on the rise… The Government of Uttar Pradesh should review law and order and take every step related to the safety of women seriously,” Gandhi wrote in a lengthy Facebook post.

With the fourth horrific case reported in just three weeks, clearly patience is running thin. It’s about time that more people speak up against such gruesome crimes.

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