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Minor girls gang-raped in front of mothers as they fled riot hit Muzaffarnagar
Monday September 16, 2013 3:10 PM, News Network

The rioters, mostly from the local Jat community, raped minor girls along with other girls and women in front of their mothers and other relatives, and kept them captives for days as they fled from the areas in and around Muzaffarnagar after violence broke out in the district, a media report said.

"Scores of women, including minor girls, were raped, gang-raped and sexually assaulted in Lisarh, Lank, Bahawadi, Hasanpur, Mohammadpur, Baghpat and many other small villages of Muzaffarnagar, Shamli and Panipat districts of Uttar Pradesh. The rape took place when the people were leaving their villages to save their lives and honour", Daily Bhaskar quoted the victims as saying in its report published September 16..

"Four women of my family, including my three daughters (aged 17, 18 and 21), were held captive by 10-13 rioters and gang-raped in front of me. I was forced to see the shameful and brutal act", Daily Bhaskar quoted a mother as saying.

"Two of my daighters have been released and the other two are still missing", she added.

Riots ravaged the western town of Muzaffarnagar for three days. More than one lakh people have been displaced when violence broke out Sep 7 and are currently taking shelter in 38 relief camps. Though the official figure put the death toll as 48, local people claimed that at least more than 200 people, mostly Muslims, have been killed in the riot.

Another girl has been quoted as saying that she was held captive for about 2 hours when she was trying to flee the village after rumour spread that they were about to be attacked by people belonging to other community.

The girl not only was able to recall the words the rioters were uttering while raping them, but also claimed to recognise the people who molested her.

"One of the attackers was Rajendra, son of Hari Kishan- main leader of Khap Panchayat of the Jat community. They were uttering the words, 'Soni soni ladkiyon ke sindur bhar denge, aur bakiyon ko kaat denge (we will marry the beautiful ones and cut into pieces the others)', she said.

The horrific riots havae shaken the entire country. The prime minister, Manmohan Singh, along with UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi and Congerss General Secretary Rahul Gandhi is visiting the riot-hit areas today. The prime minister is said to have been shocked after meeting the affected people, and called for guilty to be punished.

"People behind such ghastly violence would be punished and all help extended to the UP government," the prime minister said.

Manmohan Singh asked the Uttar Pradesh government to ensure safety and rehabilitation of the people who were displaced.

A grim faced Manmohan Singh spoke to officials as he walked through Bassi Kalan village and later Tawli amid tight security.

He told the people that he, along with Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi, had come to them in solidarity in their hour of crisis.

[Photo Caption: Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh meeting the affected people of violence in Muzaffarnagar district, Uttar Pradesh on September 16, 2013.]



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