Friday, 17 April 2015

Father, brother and uncle of 16-year-old girl arrested for ‘repeatedly raping her’

Horror: The 16-year-old girl from West Bengal had kept quiet about the abuse, before telling a teacher how her father, uncle and brother had repeatedly raped her for two years

A 16-year-old Indian girl has accused her father, uncle and brother of repeatedly raping her over a period of two years, local police have said on Saturday.
The teenager, from Dhupguri, West Bengal state, fell pregnant twice by one or two of her male family members, and was forced to undergo abortions on both occasions.
After keeping silent for two years, the teenager told a school teacher who helped her report the abuse to the police and the three men were arrested on Friday.  

'Her father, a farmer aged around 50, allegedly raped her several times. She alleged that her uncle also raped her and of late her brother had also started,' police spokesman K.L. Sherpa in Jalpaiguri district said.

The teenage girl, whose name is being withheld for her protection, has attempted suicide four times in the past two years as the abuse went on.

She told police she had been too scared to speak about her ordeal in the past, and that her mother had been aware of the abuse, but said nothing. 
The teenager is now in the custody of her aunt, police said.
From child marriage and dowry killings to rape and domestic violence, Indian girls and women face numerous threats, say experts, largely because of age-old patriarchal attitudes that view them as inferior to men.

Public protests after the fatal gang rape of a woman on a Delhi bus in December 2012 jolted many in the world's second most populous country out of apathy and forced the government to enact stiffer penalties on gender crimes.
Since then, voracious reporting by the media, campaigns by the government and programmes by civil society groups have brought greater public awareness of women's rights and emboldened more victims to come forward and register abuses.
In 2013 Indian authorities received 309,546 reports of crimes against women, a 26.7 per cent jump from 2012, according to the National Crime Records Bureau.
But in many small towns and villages, most cases still go unreported due to the shame and stigma attached to rape in these conservative societies, where the victim is often blamed.
In some villages, local councils act as de facto courts, often ordering rape to punish women.
In January 2014, a 20-year-old woman in West Bengal state was gang-raped by 13 men on the orders of a village court as punishment for having a relationship with a man from a different community. 

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