The gang rape of two minor girls, one aged two-and-half years and the other five, shocked the national capital on Saturday, prompting the Delhi Commission for Women (DCW) chief to say sexual assaults had assumed “epidemic proportions” in the city.
The five-year-old was allegedly assaulted by two men known to her family. The men, who were drunk at the time, were nabbed by people and handed over to police. No arrests have been made in connection with the other rape.
The two-and-half-year-old girl was allegedly abducted from near a ‘Ramlila’ event outside her home at Ranhola in West Delhi by two men on a motorcycle. She was gang-raped and dumped in the area with severe injuries.
The girl had stepped out of her home with her grandmother after a power cut late on Friday night, police said. She was playing while her grandmother sat nearby. The girl reportedly ran towards the main road and witnesses told police two men on a motorcycle had taken her away at about 11 pm.
When the grandmother couldn’t locate the girl, she raised an alarm. “The girl’s relatives came to the police station to get a complaint registered, following which we dispatched search teams. The girl was found two hours later behind the bushes in a jungle nearby. She was found to be bleeding,” a police official said.
The five-year-old girl was allegedly raped by two men known to her family in Anand Vihar area of East Delhi. The men, reportedly inebriated at the time, dumped her near her home after the assault.
“She returned home crying and narrated the episode to her parents, after which the locals hunted the accused down. They were reportedly beaten up by the public and then handed over to police. Both of them were drunk. We have arrested them and registered a case against them,” a police official said.
DCW head Swati Maliwal described the assaults as “extremely shocking” and told NDTV that violence against women had assumed “epidemic proportions” in Delhi.
She tweeted that the younger victim was still “bleeding profusely” and had been admitted to the Sanjay Gandhi Hospital.
“The two-and-half-year-old had marks and bites all over her body and she was left bleeding,” she said. “As a citizen of Delhi, I’m extremely ashamed at what has happened.”
Woke up to 2 incidents of gangrape of a 2.5 year old n 5 year old. Bleeding not stopping for 2.5 year old. On way to Sanjay Gandhi Hospital— Swati Maliwal (@SwatiJaiHind) October 17, 2015
When will Delhi wake up? Till when will girls continue to be brutalized in Indian capital. Gangrape of 2.5 year n 5 year old. Shameful.— Swati Maliwal (@SwatiJaiHind) October 17, 2015
Officials at the Sanjay Gandhi Hospital said the injuries on the girl’s body and private parts suggested she was brutally assaulted. A medical examination confirmed the rape.
“The nature of injuries on the private parts suggests she was subjected to torture. Since it happened in a jungle, she even had thorns in her body,” a source said.
Maliwal said she intended to meet Delhi’s Lieutenant Governor and the police commissioner to seek coordinated action for preventing such crimes.
While 11,000 FIRs were registered for crimes against women in 2014, there were only nine convictions, she said. “There is no data on POSCO (Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act) crimes,” she added.