BHOPAL: Three teenage girls, including a Dalit, who allegedly committed suicide between October 2018 and April 2019 in Bhind district of Madhya Pradesh, were possibly raped -- which could have triggered the extreme step by them.
The girls aged 14, 16 and 18 allegedly committed suicide in Mehgaon and Rawatpura areas of Bhind district. While two girls hanged themselves, another consumed poison.
In one of the three cases, which were registered under Section 174 of the CrPc, it was revealed that the girl, who was aged 18, had hanged herself after a scolding by her mother.
As part of the investigations, vaginal swab samples of all three girls were sent to a forensic science lab for analysis which indicated the presence of sperm, thus revealing sexual intercourse with the girls before their deaths.
The revelation which became known recently has raised the possibility of the three girls having been raped, which could have triggered the alleged suicides by them.
Statements of the three families are being recorded for identifying the suspects, whose DNA samples will be sent to the lab to be matched with the vaginal swab samples of the deceased. “Subsequently in all three cases, unidentified accused have been booked for abetment of suicide and sexual assault u/s 306 and 376 of IPC and further investigations are underway,” Bhind district police superintendent Rudolf Alvares told The New Indian Express on Friday.
“With all three cases being very sensitive in nature, a Sub Divisional Officer of Police (SDOP) rank officer will probe these cases,” he said.
The development comes just a fortnight after the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) Crime in India 2017 statistics revealed that MP continued to top the country when it came to rape cases. A total of 5599 girls and women were allegedly raped in the central Indian state in 2017 which was 14.6% more than the 4882 victims/cases reported in 2016.
Minor and teenage girls (aged between 6 and 18 years) continued to form the bulk of alleged rape victims in the state. While MP with 50 cases/victims was second to UP nationally in cases of rapes of girls below 6 years, it was ranked first in the country in rape cases of girls aged between 6 and 12 years (207 cases), 12-16 years (1275 cases) and 16-18 years (1550 cases).
Further analysis showed that when it came to the total number of rape cases of women/adult victims nationally, MP reported 10% of them, with 2517. But in cases of rape of minor girls, MP with 3082 cases contributed around 30% of the total in 2017.
An age-wise breakup also showed that MP contributed 17% of rape cases nationally (up from 15.4% in 2016) in the below six years age group, 26% in cases involving girls aged between 6-12 years, 34% (12-16 years), 29% (16-18 years), 10% (18-30 years), 13% (30-45 years), 21% (45-60 years) and 34% (women aged 60 and above).
A comparative study of rape cases (as per age groups of rape survivors/victims) in 2017 as compared to 2016 in MP showed a 24% increase in cases of rape of minor and teenage girls. A further age-wise breakup revealed that the number of cases rose by 24% in 2017 compared to 2016 in cases of rape of girls aged below six years, a 35% increase was seen in rape cases of girls aged between 6-12 years, 32% rise in cases of rape of girls aged between 12-16 years and 17% increase in cases of rape of girls aged between 16-18 years.