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Protests erupt over rape of 5-year-old in Delhi

Protests erupted in the national capital on Saturday demanding justice for the five-year-old girl who was brutally raped and punishment for policemen for their insensitivity in dealing with the case.

india Updated: Apr 20, 2013 13:37 IST

Protests erupted in the national capital on Saturday demanding justice for the five-year-old girl who was brutally raped and punishment for policemen for their insensitivity in dealing with the case even as police arrested the 22-year-old accused from Bihar's Muzaffarpur district.

In a throwback to scenes of December last in the wake of gangrape of a girl in a moving bus, protesters belonging to womens' organisations and ABVP clashed with the police when they tried to break the barricades and enter into the police headquarters near the ITO in central Delhi where the main roads were closed to traffic.

A protester was detained for trying to enter the police headquarters.

Security was tightened in the area with deployment of armed police personnel and at the residences of Union home minister Sushilkumar Shinde and Delhi chief minister Sheila Dikshit.

Protesters also took to the streets near AIIMS where the girl was shifted to last evening for treatment. The condition of the girl was stable today, doctors attending on her at AIIMS said.

Protesters shouted slogans demanding the resignation of the police commissioner. Activists belonging to Aam Aadmi Party also protested outside Delhi Police Headquarters alleging police apathy in the case.

The protesters focused their attack on the policemen of Gandhi Nagar who allegedly tried to hush up the case by offering money to the parents of the victim and not pursue the case. Rejecting the suspension of the sub inspector of the station, the activists demanded their arrest for beating up young girls who went to protest at the police station.

The girl was brutally raped and assaulted allegedly by her neighbour while being held captive and starved for two days. She also contracted infection from foreign objects inserted in her body.

Shocked and anguished at the sexual assault, President Pranab Mukherjee called for urgent introspection to identify causes behind repeated failure of society to ensure security of women and children.

Health Minister Ghulam Nabi Azad visited the rape victim at AIIMS and inquired about her health.

The minister met the girl's parents and assured them of all help and medical care to the victim. He also met the doctors of AIIMS and instructed them to provide best medical treatment to the girl. The minister stayed in the hospital for 15 minutes.

In Muzaffarpur in Bihar, police arrested the youth Manoj Kumar allegedly involved in the rape.The youth was arrested by a team from Delhi with the help of local police.

The accused, who has come here by a train from Delhi, was traced after tracking his mobile phone location.

Kumar had married recently and his wife had come to her parent's place two days back.The accused, working as labourer in Delhi, is a native of Bharphua village of the district.

Delhi Police has registered a case and slapped charges of attempt to murder and rape among other things on Kumar, who allegedly confined the girl in his room for at least two days.

Terming the incident as deeply painful and deplorable, Information and Broadcasting Minister Manish Tewari pitched for police reforms in containing such cases.

"...the Government has toughened the anti-rape law but there is also a need to work on police reforms process. Since it (police reforms) falls under the jurisdiction of states, the Centre and states should work on bringing reforms in police in a coordinated manner," he said.

Tewari also stressed on the need for changing the mindset of male-dominated society.

Activist Ranjana Kumari said, "Our demand is that all the police personnel should be fined under the law of the land.

"Suspension is not enough... you can't allow police personnel to beat up women," she said.

Condemning the incident, BJP Vice President Smriti Irani said rapists should be given capital punishment.

Kavita Krishnan, Secretary of the All Indian Progressive Women's Association said, "There have been series of such incidents where police personnel have violated the law. This time an ACP beat up a woman, who is going to take the responsibility.Our main demand is that police officers, who committed this crime must be sent to jail".

First Published: Apr 20, 2013 13:19 IST