A 9-year-old girl Dalit girl was sexually assaulted, murdered, and forcibly cremated by a priest and his three associates in New Delhi, India. This horrific incident took place on Sunday, 1st August.
The victim’s mother told the media that her daughter went out to drink from a water cooler, but didn’t return even after an hour passed, Getting anxious, the mother went to the crematorium where the priest informed her that her daughter was dead. The priest claimed that it was because of electrocution. The priest refused to let the mother take the girl to the hospital or the police station and offered money to settle the matter while warning her of her inability to fight a case. On the mother’s insisting she was allowed to look at the girl’s dead body which she found bruised, pale and all her clothes wet. The priest then locked the crematorium, and forcibly cremated the girl’s dead body with the help of his associates, heartlessly ignoring the devastated and protesting mother.
As the news of the incident spread the father, along with the neighbours rushed to the crematorium. Where the priest and three others confessed to gang rape. The police later arrived and sealed the crematorium while taking custody of the four accused. The police have initiated an investigation while the public demands answers.
There have been protests in New Delhi’s Nangal neighborhood and are likely to spread throughout the country. As this isn’t an isolated incident, India is among the most dangerous countries for women. There was a similar incident last year in Uttar Pradesh. This has further fueled the outrage of social activists and the public at the atrocities committed against not only women but also the Dalits who are among the lowest “untouchable”, marginalized castes of Hinduism.
The public is on the streets demanding justice and reform to the law and order to stop the deteriorating conditions in India.