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HindustanTimes Fri,01 Aug 2014

Tormented by cops over Dalit rape victim gone missing, kin commit suicide

Surender Sharma & Devendra Uppal , Hindustan Times   Hisar/Rohtak , April 22, 2013
First Published: 21:02 IST(22/4/2013) | Last Updated: 21:28 IST(22/4/2013)

A 38-year-old woman and her 12-year-old daughter died while her husband and two minor sons ended up in a critical condition after the Dalit family consumed poison in Bheri Akbarpur village of Uklana, 50km from district headquarters Hisar, allegedly tormented by the police over the whereabouts of her elder daughter who is missing after filing a report of rape.

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The suicide pact came to light around 9am on Monday, when villagers took the family (names withheld to protect rape victim's identity) to a hospital in Uklana and the police were informed. At the Hisar civil hospital, two members of the family were declared dead and the 40-year-old family head and two sons, 9 and 11, were referred to the PGIMS hospital at Rohtak, 100km away, where the man narrated the family's woes. The two boys were in a critical condition.

A casual labourer, the man said his 16-year-old daughter who had reported rape in May last year was missing since many months, and not only would the police keep pressing him to locate her, but the family had been suffering humiliation at the hands of the villagers too. He said he wanted to kill only himself but, when he discussed it with his family, they wanted to do the same.

The rape FIR had been lodged on May 19 last year, two days after the girl had first gone missing and then found at a nearby village. The rape accused, arrested a day after the FIR, remains behind bars, even as the girl reportedly went missing again in June, the report for which was lodged only this February, it is learnt.

Meanwhile, the sixth hearing of the case is on April 30, at which the police have to give status of the missing report filed on February 22. Thus under pressure for their failure to locate the girl, the police allegedly quizzed her father repeatedly.

"The case is in a fast-track court at Hisar. But as the girl's statement has not been recorded, the court has been postponing the matter for around four months," a police official said.

Though deputy superintendent of police Mukesh Jakhar said he "did not know" if the family was being pressurised, officials sought to underline that the family's financial condition was not good leading to them being "disturbed".


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