The Dalit gangrape survivor from Hathras, who died on Tuesday, was reportedly cremated last night at 2:30 AM. It is being alleged that her family was locked in their house and that the cremation was carried out against there wishes. News reports have revealed that the woman's family argued with the Hathras police leading to unrest.
When the family became suspicious that the woman's body was being taken away to perform the last rites in the middle of the night, the father insisted that it was "against their traditions" and pleaded that her body was handed over to them, so that they could cremate her following proper rituals next morning. The woman's brother further alleged that her body was taken away without their knowledge or consent.
"The police have forcibly taken the dead body, and my father along with them for cremation. When my father reached Hathras, he was immediately taken (to the crematorium) by the police,” he told PTI.
According to a report by NDTV, the woman's father and brothers were taken away in a Black Scorpio with Uttar Pradesh plates after they sat down to stage a protest.
Following her death at Safdarjung Hospital in Delhi yesterday, her body was taken to her village in Hathras after midnight. Reportedly, the police vehicle was stopped multiple times by the protesters before the cops allegedly pushed them back and took the body to the funeral ground.
Journalist Tanushree Pandey posted a video on Twitter wherein a police officer can be heard advising the woman's family to cremate her, "Samaj ki riti riwaaz paramparaen samay ke hisaab se badalti hain. Yeh ek extra ordinary situation hai...Kuch galtiyaan hui hain apse, is baat ko aapko sweekar karna chahie. Kuch galtiyaan aur logon see bhi hui hain, unko bhi sweekar karna chahie." The officer further insists, "Post-mortem ko bhi 12-13 ghante ho gae hai," When the villagers said that it was too late in the night to cremate the body, he replied, "Kahin nhi likha hai ki daha sanskar raat me nhi hota hai. Hota hai."
#HathrasCase Can’t believe my ears. UP cop giving gyaan to inconsolable family - “riti riwaaz samay ke saath badalte hain. Aur aap log maaniye ki aap log se bhi galti hui hai”— Tanushree Pandey (@TanushreePande) September 29, 2020
Family begging “why are you not letting us take our daughter home for sometime? Why are you forcing” pic.twitter.com/oRkinNmpzS
A 19-year-old Dalit woman was reportedly gangraped by four upper-caste men in Hathras on 14 September. The woman had accompanied her mother to a field from where she reportedly taken away by the accused, forcefully. After the incident, the woman said in her statement that the accused had tried to strangulate her when she resisted the attempt.
She had a deep cut on her tongue and was left paralysed from a severe spinal cord injury. The four accused in the case, namely Sandip, Ramu, Lavkush and Ravi have been arrested by the police. They have been charged under section 307 (attempt to murder) of the IPC but later charged under section 376 D (gangrape), murder and the SC/ST Act.
Image Credit: VK Singh and company
Khushi Gupta is an intern with SheThePeople.TV.