A 16 year old girl was raped in Jharkhand and then burnt alive by the very men who had gang-raped her night before. This took place in the Chatra district of the state, considered to be a naxal region.

NDTV reports “the four men, allegedly drunk, kidnapped her last night from her house when everyone was away at a wedding. The men allegedly took her to a deserted spot and raped her.”

The accused were caught and identified. The villager found the rapists. You would think the people would them and hand them into custody. But no. They were instead tried at a kangaroo court in the village itself. Reports say that “when the girl’s father went to the village council head and other members of the panchayat, the accused men were ordered to do 100 sit-ups and pay a fine of Rs. 50,000.” This ‘punishment’ enraged the rapists, who in their quest for revenge beat up the girls parents and burnt her alive.

According to Hindustan Times the victim’s father said, “After the incident, we approached the village elders who suggested holding a panchayat in the village on Friday morning to decide the punishment. When the panchayat imposed a cash penalty, the accused and his men got infuriated and started thrashing us. We ran away to save our lives.”

Police officers say the men escaped and teams are looking for them.

Reported rape cases in India have climbed steadily over recent years to around 40,000 in 2016, or about 100 a day, with many more believed to go unreported. Child rape accounts for about 40 percent of the reported cases as per a Reuters report.

If this doesn’t enrage and numb you at the same time, what does? Shame on us. The collective public anger over rape is at its peak. Series of rape cases starting from Kathua rape case, Unnao rape case to many others are being reported every other day. What are we doing to ensure these don’t ever happen? What are we doing to make sure, the men are trained to behave. We need to break the silence.

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