A 14-year-old girl from Karnataka’s Bijapur district was raped and murdered on Tuesday. Angry residents of the district got together and beat up two suspects outside the police station on Tuesday evening.
According to the Investigating Officer, Basavaraj Patil, three men were detained for questioning on Tuesday evening.
“The girl was in Class 9. On Tuesday afternoon, she and her cousin sister stepped outside the school and were walking home during the lunch break. It was then that two miscreants came on a bike and forcefully took her away,” the police official said.
Four other men in an autorickshaw joined the two men on the bike. Officer Patil says that the victim’s cousin followed the men to an empty site near the school.
“She came back and informed the teacher regarding her sister’s whereabouts. By the time the teacher and a few residents of the village rushed to the spot, the girl was lying unconscious and was not breathing properly,” the investigating officer said.
An ambulance was called immediately and the girl’s parents rushed her to the government-run taluk hospital. However, she passed away in the ambulance.
“Medical tests have been conducted and it was revealed that she was suffocated. There are bruises on her neck. She was in bad shape by the time help arrived. We have registered a case of rape, murder, kidnapping and also registered a case under the POCSO Act for gang-raping a minor,” officer Patil added.
Three people have been detained so far; the police said that apart from these men, the others are all minor boys.
“According to the information provided by the victim’s cousin, one of the men detained had been stalking the victim for a while now. We are yet to arrest the other suspects. Currently, they are being questioned,” Officer Patil added.
Tuesday night saw a few tense scenes – videos circulating the internet show a crowd waiting outside the police station as the suspects are being brought in. The angry crowd grabbed two suspects and began beating them up. The police quickly intervened and took the suspects inside the police station.
Late on Tuesday night, the victim’s parents brought her body to Vijayapura Deputy Commissioner’s office near Ambedkar Circle and sat down in protest.
Family members and residents of the minor girl’s village accompanied her parents and demanded that the perpetrators be brought to justice.
As the protests gained momentum, Water Resource Minister MB Patil visited the spot and assured the demonstrators that strict action would be taken against the perpetrators.