The latest shocking instance to expose the country’s endemic sexual assault problem, at least seven men have been detained in western India after a 16-year-old girl said she was raped hundreds of times by hundreds of men.
According to CWC chairman Abhay Vitthalrao Vanave, the girl, who was homeless, told India’s Child Welfare Committee (CWC) on November 11 that she was raped by 400 individuals in Maharashtra’s Beed district. According to Vanave, she listed two police officers in her complaint.
Three men reportedly pushed the girl into sex work when she was begging for money at a bus stop, according to Vanave.
While the exact number of alleged rapists would be impossible to verify, he claimed that the girl could name at least 25 of them.
According to Vanave, the girl sought to submit a police complaint against a guy she accused of assaulting her, but cops failed to register it.
Beed police declined to comment on the girl’s charges against them when reached by CNN on Monday.
In a statement Monday, the force said it had registered cases against eight males — including one minor — pertaining to rape and the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences law, which has more severe sentences of longer jail time. They have also registered a case under the Prohibition of Child Marriage Act.
According to the police statement, the girl told police she was married off at age 13 to a 33-year-old man who sexually abused her,.
She also told police she was sexually assaulted by her father, ultimately prompting her to leave both homes and sleep at the bus stop.
Women’s rights activist Yogita Bhayana said this was “the most tragic (rape) case in history.”
“This girl was tortured every single day,” she said, adding that police had failed to protect her. “We want strict action against all culprits.”