The Canadian Press - ONLINE EDITION

Attackers of Indian sisters hang 2 bodies from tree, where villagers protest police response

  • Print
In this Wednesday, May 28, 2014 image taken from video, a crowd gathers near where two teenage sisters were found hanging from a mango tree in Katra village in Uttar Pradesh state, in northern India. Authorities have arrested three men, including two police officers, suspected of gang-raping and killing the teenagers before hanging their bodies from the tree, sparking renewed public outrage over sexual violence in the country. (AP Photo/NNIS via AP Video) INDIA OUT

Enlarge Image

In this Wednesday, May 28, 2014 image taken from video, a crowd gathers near where two teenage sisters were found hanging from a mango tree in Katra village in Uttar Pradesh state, in northern India. Authorities have arrested three men, including two police officers, suspected of gang-raping and killing the teenagers before hanging their bodies from the tree, sparking renewed public outrage over sexual violence in the country. (AP Photo/NNIS via AP Video) INDIA OUT

LUCKNOW, India - Two teenage sisters in rural India were raped and killed by attackers who hung their bodies from a mango tree, which became the scene of a silent protest by villagers angry about alleged police inaction in the case. Two of the four men arrested so far are police officers.

Villagers found the girls' bodies hanging from the tree early Wednesday, hours after they disappeared from fields near their home in Katra village in Uttar Pradesh state, police Superintendent Atul Saxena said. The girls, who were 14 and 15, had gone into the fields because there was no toilet in their home.

Hundreds of angry villagers stayed next to the tree throughout Wednesday, silently protesting the police response. Indian TV footage showed the villagers sitting under the girls' bodies as they swung in the wind, and preventing authorities from taking them down until the suspects were arrested.

Police arrested two police officers and two men from the village later Wednesday and were searching for three more suspects.

Autopsies confirmed the girls had been raped and strangled before being hung, Saxena said.

The villagers accused the chief of the local police station of ignoring a report by the girls' father Tuesday night that the girls were missing. The station chief in Katra, 180 miles (300 kilometres) southwest of the state capital, Lucknow, has since been suspended.

The family belongs to the Dalit community, also called "untouchables" and considered the lowest rung in India's age-old caste system.

Records show a rape is committed every 22 minutes in India, a nation of 1.2 billion people. Activists say that number is low because of an entrenched culture of tolerance for sexual violence, which leads many cases to go unreported. Women are often pressed by family or police to stay quiet about sexual assault, and those who do report it are often subjected to public ridicule or social stigma.

India tightened its anti-rape laws last year, making gang rape punishable by the death penalty, even when the victim survives. The new laws came after the fatal gang rape of a 23-year-old woman on a bus in New Delhi that triggered nationwide protests.

Health workers, police and women's rights activists say women and girls face the risk of rape and harassment when they go out into fields or bushes due to the lack of toilets in their homes.

More than a half billion Indians lack access to toilets. A recent study said around 30 per cent of women from poor families faced violent sexual assaults every year because they did not have access to a safe toilet.

Last month, the head of Uttar Pradesh state's governing party, the regionally prominent Samajwadi Party, told an election rally that the party was opposed to the law calling for gang rapists to be executed.

"Boys will be boys," Mulayam Singh Yadav said. "They make mistakes."

Fact Check

Fact Check

Have you found an error, or know of something we’ve missed in one of our stories?
Please use the form below and let us know.

* Required
  • Please post the headline of the story or the title of the video with the error.

  • Please post exactly what was wrong with the story.

  • Please indicate your source for the correct information.

  • Yes

    No

  • This will only be used to contact you if we have a question about your submission, it will not be used to identify you or be published.

  • Cancel

Having problems with the form?

Contact Us Directly
  • Print

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

Have Your Say

New to commenting? Check out our Frequently Asked Questions.

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscribers only. why?

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press Subscribers only. why?

The Winnipeg Free Press does not necessarily endorse any of the views posted. By submitting your comment, you agree to our Terms and Conditions. These terms were revised effective April 16, 2010.

letters

Make text: Larger | Smaller

LATEST VIDEO

Tree remover has special connection to Grandma Elm

View more like this

Photo Store Gallery

  • A gosling stares near water at Omands Creek Park-See Bryksa 30 day goose challenge- Day 25– June 21, 2012   (JOE BRYKSA / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS)
  • Challenges of Life- Goose Goslings jump over railway tracks to catch up to their parents at the Canadian Pacific Railway terminalon Keewatin St in Winnipeg Thursday morning. The young goslings seem to normally hatch in the truck yard a few weeks before others in town- Standup photo- ( Day 4 of Bryksa’s 30 day goose project) - Apr 30, 2012   (JOE BRYKSA / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS)

View More Gallery Photos

Poll

What's your take on a report that shows violent crime is decreasing in Winnipeg?

View Results

View Related Story

Ads by Google