A 16-year-old from Chatra, Jharkhand, was allegedly raped by four men on May 3, and then murdered by their accomplices on May 4.
The victim was at her cousin’s house to attend a wedding, when she was kidnapped and then later gangraped. The matter was brought to the notice of the panchayat in Raja Kendua village by the minor’s family. As punishment, the panchayat imposed a cash penalty on the accused amounting to Rs 50,000, and ‘asked them to do sit-ups’. However the panchayat’s ruling didn’t go down well with the accused.
Enraged at the cash fine, they resorted to violence, beating the parents, who had to run away to save themselves. When they returned home, they found that the victim, who was in 8th grade, had been burned to death.
The father of the minor said, “After the incident [the gangrape], we approached the village elders who suggested holding a panchayat in the village on Friday morning to decide the punishment. When the panchayat imposed a cash penalty, the accused and his men got infuriated and started thrashing us. We ran away to save our lives. However, when we returned after half an hour, we found our daughter burnt and dead inside our home.”
The police has arrested 14 people who are said to be connected with the murder, and the alleged gangrape. However not all of the accused have been apprehended, and six still remain missing.