NP news report
INDIA: Police in the Indian state of Tamil Nadu’s capital city Chennai have found out that the main perpetrator of the gang-rape of an 11-year-old girl was a 66-year-old lift operator in her apartment block.
The lift operator was the first to assault the girl, the police said. He allegedly invited others, who filmed each other raping the child. The police say she was threatened and blackmailed with the videos and so she was raped repeatedly from January 2018. The operator drugged the little girl before inviting the others to assault her.
A Chennai court on Tuesday the 17th charged the 17 security guards, electricians and plumbers with raping a minor and remanded them to police custody until July 31st.
This case — although just another in a spate of others — has revolted Indians across the country, with lawyers refusing to plead the rapists’ case in court and going so far as to attack them on court premises, the Indian press said.
The assaults came to light when the girl confided in her elder sister, who told their parents and a complaint was filed. The men were arrested the next day.
The men allegedly took the girl to various places in the complex such as the basement, and gym among other places. Many of the apartment building’s CCTV cameras don’t work and the workmen who raped the child took advantage of their first-hand knowledge.
Families living in the complex are frightened and say they are horrified and feel betrayed. Now a group of eight women residents guard the block till the residents decide what to do about their security at the complex.
Residents say they feel violated and betrayed because the men used to smile and salute them and the workmen such as plumbers had access to their homes. Yet others wonder how nobody had any idea about what was going on.
Subsequently, the Madras High Court has suggested the girl be sent to the Child Welfare Committee (CWC). India’s NDTV reported that a child rights activist told the judges that the girl was raped for several weeks and therefore needed counselling, prompting the court to issue the direction.