Police ban mass gatherings in Indian village after clashes erupted following the cremation of gang-rape victim


Political activists gather during a vigil following accusations of Indian Police forcibly cremating the body of a 19-year-old woman victim, who was allegedly gang-raped by four men in Bool Garhi village of Uttar Pradesh state, on the steps of the Asiatic Society in Mumbai on September 30, 2020. (Photo by INDRANIL MUKHERJEE/AFP via Getty Images)
Political activists gather during a vigil following accusations of Indian Police forcibly cremating the body of a 19-year-old woman victim, who was allegedly gang-raped by four men in Bool Garhi village of Uttar Pradesh state, on the steps of the Asiatic Society in Mumbai on September 30, 2020. (Photo by INDRANIL MUKHERJEE/AFP via Getty Images)

INDIAN POLICE imposed emergency laws on Thursday(1) in a village barring gatherings of more than five people after clashes erupted following the cremation of the gang-rape victim.



The 19-year-old victim died from her injuries on Tuesday(29), having been attacked and gang-raped on September 14 in a field near her home in Hathras district, 100 km (62 miles) from Delhi, authorities said.

So far, Police have arrested four men in connection with the crime.

Orders preventing the gathering of more than 5 people have been imposed in Hathras, Vikrant Vir, the top police official in the district, said.



Under the emergency laws, police will stop members of political organisations from entering Hathras, Vir said.

Media reports said that Priyanka and Rahul Gandhi, leaders of the opposition Congress Party, along with Chandra Shekhar Aazad, a popular Dalit politician who founded the Bhim Army to campaign for the rights of the community, all planned to visit the district on Thursday.

Clashes between protesters and police erupted in the district in the northern state of Uttar Pradesh on Wednesday(30) after police cremated the woman’s body.



The victim’s brother told Reuters the cremation was carried out against the wishes of her family, who had wanted to perform their own funeral rites. Local officials deny this.

Twenty-five people were arrested in connection with the unrest, according to a police information report. An eye-witness said that police had wielded batons during the clashes.

India is the one of the world’s most dangerous countries for women, with a rape occurring every 15 minutes, according to federal data – figures that rights groups say vastly underestimate the scale of the problem.



This latest case has caused widespread outrage and protests across India due to the backgrounds of those involved.

While the victim came the Dalit community – who face frequent discrimination and violence – the four men arrested were all from a higher caste, her brother said.

The victim and her brother are not being identified due to laws against naming victims of sexual violence.

Uttar Pradesh, which is ruled by Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Bharatiya Janata Party, ranks as one of the most unsafe states for women in the country.