In a shocking incident, a woman who got down from a Delhi-bound train in Bhagalpur district, was gangraped, killed and her semi-naked body hung from a tree in a mango orchard in Kahalgaon.
The woman, along with her 10-year-old son and two relatives, was on way to Delhi from Alipurdwar to join her husband who works as a labourer in Delhi. They were travelling by the Brahmaputra Mail.
Police said the 32-year-old victim was dragged to the mango orchard and gangraped by unidentified persons after she alighted from the train between Vikramshila and Kahalgaon stations.
She was strangled to death and her body hung from a tree late Saturday night. Police recovered the body on Sunday and sent it to the Jawaharlal Nehru Medical College and Hospital in Bhagalpur for postmortem.
According to sources, the woman hailed from New Jalpaiguri district in West Bengal. The Kahalgaon GRP was informed of the incident by the woman's cousin and her husband, who were also travelling with the victim in the train. They told the police that the victim had started feeling restless in the crowded compartment of the train after the train left Sahebganj. She wanted to get down from the compartment, but was somehow persuaded not to do so by them as well as co-passengers, they added.
"However, as the train slowed down near Kajipur, located between Kahalgaon and Vikramshila stations, she jumped out of the compartment," the relatives informed the police, adding before they could do something, the train had gained speed.
ASP, Bhagalpur, Meenu Kumari said the woman was feeling restless. "As she went towards the toilet, her cousin followed her. When she jumped out of the train all on a sudden, the cousin tried to stop her, but couldn't. It is not clear why she took this step."
A group of inebriated people then dragged her to a nearby mango orchard and sexually assaulted her.
"Liquor bottles were found at the spot," said the ASP. A railway ticket and cellphone number of her village pradhan written on a piece of paper was recovered from the victim's possession.
At present, the woman's son and relatives are at Kahalgaon police station.
Bhagalpur SSP K S Anupam confirmed recovery of the body, but said prima facie it did not appear to be a case of rape. However, she added that it would be clear only after the postmortem if the woman had been was raped or not.
The SSP further said the inquiry into the circumstances, which caused the woman to jump out of the compartment - as claimed by her relatives - was in preliminary stages.
She said the orchard where the body was found hanging from a tree is located at a distance of nearly 10 km from the place where the woman was said to have got down from the train. According to local sources, the victim's clothes were found strewn nearly 50 metres away from the tree.
The latest incident comes close on heels of the December 16 gangrape of a 23-year-old paramedical student by six persons in a moving bus in south Delhi. She was brutally assaulted and thrown on the road without clothes. The victim died in a Singapore hospital on December 29.