Four accused, including a police constable, have been arrested for the horrific rape and murder of two Dalit teenage sisters in a village in Badaun district of west UP.
The sisters aged 12 and 14 were raped and killed by attackers who hung their bodies from a mango tree in Katra Saahadatganj village, about 300km from here, on Wednesday morning.
The girls had gone missing after they went into the fields because there was no toilet in their home.
Villagers told reporters that the police were hand in glove with the seven accused, and had refused to register an FIR even after the bodies were found. Hundreds of angry villagers protested next to the tree on
Wednesday for the entire day, demanding that the accused be arrested before the bodies are brought down from the tree.
Autopsies confirmed the girls had been raped and strangled before being hung, district SP Atul Saxena said.
The villagers accused the SO of the local police station and he, along with two others, has since been suspended.
Last month, ruling Samajwadi Party president Mulayam Singh Yadav had told an election rally that the party was opposed to the new anti-rape law providing capital punishment for gang rape and murder. "Boys will be boys," Mulayam Singh Yadav had said. "They make mistakes."
Meanwhile, the National Commission of Women has taken suo moto cognisance of the double gang-rape and murder.
"We have taken suo moto cognisance of the gang rape. An enquiry committee has been set up and will be sent there for further investigations into the case. We are waiting the Action Taken report and only after that we can see what needs to be done. Right now we have no information about any arrests made in the case," National Commission for Women chairperson Mamata Sharma said.
Describing the case as "gruesome", she said strict action would be taken based on the inquiry. She said an enquiry committee would be sent in a day or two to look into the matter.