A day after the 19-year-old Dalit woman, who was raped and murdered allegedly by four upper caste men in Uttar Pradesh’s Hathras, died at Delhi’s Safdarjung hospital, Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath Wednesday constituted a three-member Special Investigation Team (SIT) to investigate the crime. Adityanath has asked the team to submit a report within seven days and said a fast-track court will begin hearing the case.
“The culprits of Hathras incident against the girl will not be let go. An SIT has been formed to investigate the matter and it will submit a report within seven days. To ensure early justice, the case will be run in a fast track court,” Adityanath tweeted.
The step was taken reportedly after Prime Minister Narendra Modi talked to the chief minister and directed to ensure strict action against those responsible for the incident. “Prime Minister Narendra Modi spoke to me over Hathras incident, he said that strictest of action be taken against the culprits,” Yogi added.
Meanwhile, it has been confirmed that the SIT will be headed by Home Secretary Bhagwan Swaroop, and will have UP Police DIG Chandraprakash and Agra PAC Commandant Poonam as the members.
The woman succumbed to her injuries two weeks after she was attacked while helping her mother in the fields. The body of the victim was cremated a little after 3 am Wednesday — with her family saying police had forcibly performed the last rites late at night even though they wanted to bring her body home one last time. “It appears that my sister has been cremated; the police are not telling us anything. We begged them to let us bring her body inside the house one last time, but they didn’t listen to us,” the woman’s brother told at 3.30 am Wednesday.
The victim was initially admitted to a district hospital 15 days ago with her tongue cut off and spinal cord severely injured, among other serious injuries. She was later shifted to Aligarh hospital for treatment, before moving to Safdarjung Hospital in the national capital. The police said the victim had been dragged into a field and gangraped. She had also been strangled with her dupatta.
Four upper caste men of the woman’s village in Hathras district, who were charged with gangrape and attempt to murder, apart from charges under the SC/ST (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, have been arrested.
They were arrested based on a statement provided by the victim on September 23, when she briefly regained consciousness. She had accused three men – Sandeep, his uncle Ravi (35) and their friend Luv Kush, of committing the crime.
Security has already been beefed up outside the Safdarjung Hospital where the Congress and Bhim Army activists were staging a protest over the gang-rape of the woman. Meanwhile, members of the Delhi Mahila Congress also staged a protest at Vijay Chowk demanding justice for the victim.