Four-year-old raped in New Delhi, locals protest and organise public meeting

 A four-year-old child was raped in New Delhi when she had gone for tuition lessons. The child was raped by the 34-year-old brother of her tuition teacher. Local residents have protested and even organised a public meeting with police officials.
Image: PTI

The girl has gone for her tuition lessons at the home of a teacher nearby. However, the teacher had not been home at the time. The police have stated that the girl came back and told of the assault to her parents, revealing that the teacher’s brother had assaulted her in the teacher’s absence and had threatened her to be silent about the assault.

The police made arrests after they received a complaint at the Mandawali Police Station from the family of the victim.  The harrowing incident occurred on March 20, at the home of a tuition teacher in Pandav Nagar, East Delhi, according to police reports.

The victim was referred to AIIMS for treatment. The following day of the incident on March 24, Delhi Minister Atishi had written a letter to Lt Governor V K Saxena and urged for strong and quick action against the perpetrator of the assault and to provide a safe environment for women in Delhi, “Today I am writing to you not just as a minister, but as a woman who lives in Delhi. Article 239AA of the Constitution gives you the responsibility of police and public order. Kindly ensure that swift and strongest possible action is taken against the perpetrators of this horrendous crime.”

Following the news of the incident, a huge crowd of hundreds of people had gathered outside the accused’s residence the following day. The crowd started protesting for police action and soon the demonstration turned violent as protesters damaged vehicles in the vicinity.  The Delhi Police had to deploy additional police personnel to maintain law and order.

DCP East Delhi Apoorva Gupta has debunked rumours, and has claimed contrary to rumours saying that the victim’s health is critical, the child is doing well under recovery. Furthermore, on April 1, DCP Gupta told ANI that the local residents of Pandav Nagar had organised a Mahasabha, a public meeting, with the police officials’ presence and told them of their demands. The police have stated that they will consider the demands and undertake all necessary steps in the case.

Ten days after the incident, the ANI reported the name of the alleged rapist as Appu. However, apart from this no other information about the identity of the teacher and accused has not been disclosed by the media so far. It has been observed that if the accused is of a minority community, then the entrenched commercial (especially television and social) media is noted to publish the name of the accused in its reports immediately after an incident which often leads to social media becoming rife with stereotypes about minority groups as a whole. However, no online campaign has followed the incident against the accused in this case.

According to the latest yearly report by the National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) released in December 2023 titled Crime in India 2022, crimes reported against women and children have increased exponentially over the years. Around 445,256, cases were registered in 2022 alone for crimes against women, which averaged at about nearly 51 FIRs every hour, as per a report by The Hindu’s Frontline. Meanwhile, cases under the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act 2012 have witnessed a huge rise, of about 94 % in the past six years, from 2017 to 2022, according to reports. Uttar Pradesh recorded the highest number of reported offences under the POCSO Act with 8136 out of 63414 total cases.

In relation to crimes against women, Delhi was ranked at number one among 19 metropolitan cities in India with regards to reported rape cases and fifteen percent of the total cases come from Uttar Pradesh, which borders Delhi. On a daily average, the city witnessed three rape cases daily and reported having a total of 1,212 registered sexual assault cases.



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