lørdag 10. oktober 2020

Hathras case: A woman repeatedly reported rape. Why are police denying it?

Late last month, a 19-year-old woman died in the northern Indian state of Uttar Pradesh after reporting she'd been gang raped and and brutally assaulted. The evidence backs up her story, so why do officials keep insisting she wasn't raped? The BBC's Geeta Pandey reports from Hathras. The injured teenager was brought to the Chandpa police station in Hathras district by her parents and her brother. In a 48-second video filmed at the scene and shown to the BBC, she can be seen lying on a cement platform while she is questioned by a policeman off camera.

There appear to be bruises on her neck, face and hand, and she seems to be in tremendous pain. She speaks with difficulty because, it would later emerge, she has a big gash on her tongue. She tells the policeman her attacker tried to strangle her and the policeman asks her why. "Because I wasn't letting him do zabardasti," she says. Zabardasti is an Urdu word that literally translates into "coercion" or "force" and is used by women especially in parts of rural India as slang for rape.