- The woman had been in an extremely critical state with multiple fractures
- She was at a hospital in UP before being shifted to Delhi on Monday
- The four attackers are in jail. They will be charged with murder as well
A 20-year-old woman from Uttar Pradesh’s Hathras, gang-raped and tortured by four men two weeks ago, died this morning in a Delhi hospital. The woman had been in an extremely critical state with multiple fractures and her tongue had been slashed in the horrific assault.
She had been in the ICU in a hospital in Uttar Pradesh until she was moved to Delhi yesterday.
All four attackers are in jail. They will now also be charged with murder. The woman belonged to the Scheduled Castes community, while the attackers were from a so-called upper caste. The incident, coming in a wave of crimes against women in Uttar Pradesh in recent months, sparked nationwide shock and anger as details of the woman’s injuries emerged. Spinal fractures left her paralysed and struggling to breathe, said doctors. It was also believed that she bit her tongue and cut it when her attackers were trying to strangle her.
“The incident is very saddening. Our government stands with the victim’s family. Investigation started immediately and four accused have been arrested. Strict action will be taken. The law will take its course,” said UP minister Siddharth Nath Singh.
The woman’s family has accused the Uttar Pradesh police of not helping them initially but reacting only after public outrage.
The woman was attacked on September 14 at her village in Hathras, some 200 km from Delhi. She was dragged by her dupatta into the fields from a spot where she had been cutting grass with her family.
“My mother, sister and elder brother had gone to a field to get some grass. My brother went home earlier with a large bundle of grass, while my mother and sister continued to cut them. The women were a little far from each other. Four-five people came from behind, they threw my sister’s dupatta around her neck and dragged her inside the bajra field,” the woman’s brother told NDTV.
“My mother realised she was missing and went looking for her. My sister was found unconscious. They had raped her. The police did not help us initially… they did not take quick action. They acted only after four-five days,” he said.
This morning, the woman’s brothers alleged more lapses by the police.
“We were told that she would be taken to AIIMS but she was taken to Safdarjung,” one of them told reporters.
“Her condition was very bad. She was found in the bajra field, without clothes. Initially we even wondered if she was bitten by a snake. Three bones on her neck were broken. She had difficulty breathing… She needed oxygen right from the beginning. We reached here (Safdarjung Hospital) yesterday,” another brother said.
The Uttar Pradesh police has denied the family’s allegation of slow response. “This is a very unfortunate incident but we have been proactive in making arrests and helping the family in whatever manner possible . I will personally ensure swift investigation and that these men are tried in a fast track court,” Hathras police chief Vikrant Vir had told NDTV in an interview on Sunday.