Jind rape-murder: Locals were afraid to approach girl’s body due to fear of being linked
People took photos and videos of the body and circulated it on social media, reportedly to help the police identify her.india Updated: Jan 18, 2018 23:40 IST
For at least 30 minutes after a 15-year-old Dalit girl was found dead next to an agricultural field in Haryana’s Jind, her naked body remained on display for villagers and curious onlookers.
People took photos and videos of the body and circulated it on social media, reportedly in a bid to help the police identify her. Her identity was not concealed in the pictures, even though her lower body was cropped out in the circulated photographs.
A doctor who oversaw the post-mortem examination said the girl was sexually assaulted “brutally” by at least two people. Eyewitnesses, meanwhile, said they were “scared” to approach the body. “We were afraid that we could be linked to the crime if we approached it. So, we watched from a distance until police arrived and covered it,” said Subhash Chander, a panchayat member of Budha Khera village.
Most villagers chose to avoid speaking about the incident. “We have seen how an innocent man was picked up in a school murder case,” justified another villager.
The body was discovered a little after 4pm on January 12 by Devender, son of Sugan Chand who owns the field where the body was found. “I was on a visit to my field when I found it. Without even checking who it was, I ran back to my village and alerted everyone,” Devender claimed.
According to Sunil Gehlot, who rushed to the spot on learning of the crime, the body was lying along a slope next to a muddy road, at least eight feet from a canal flowing across the road. “There was only a torn T-shirt on her body and injuries on her face,” he said.
Villagers said the spot was isolated and only farmers owning fields nearby ventured there. “It could be the work of someone who knew the area well or anyone who might have driven there on realising it was an isolated spot,” said Gehlot.