Madhya Pradesh: 13-year-old Dalit rape survivor allegedly beaten by police

Girl’s family alleges police forcibly kept the girl overnight at the police station where she was kicked and beaten with belts to pressure her to change her statement


In a shocking incident in Madhya Pradesh’s Chhatarpur city, a 13-year-old Dalit girl was allegedly forcibly kept in custody overnight and beaten up by police personnel when she went to register a rape case.

On August 27, when the girl went out to play, she was allegedly kidnapped. When she did not return home, her family registered a missing persons complaint the following day. The girl finally managed to get back home on August 30 and accused one Babu Khan of forcibly taking her to his house and raping her for three days. That’s when the girl and her family approached the police again to register a rape complaint. But instead of helping them, the police allegedly tried to pressure the girl to change her statement.

The girl’s mother told a news agency, “Two policewomen put pressure on my daughter to change her statement. They beat up my daughter. Another police officer took me outside. Inside, my daughter was kicked and beaten with belts.” The police kept the girl overnight at the police station. The following day, when the parents again approached the policemen, but were driven away.

A complaint was only registered on the evening of September 1, but even then, the police only registered a complaint of rape and did not include a charge of kidnapping. Moreover, they recorded the survivor’s age as 17 years in the First Information Report (FIR), instead of 13.

This is when a team from the district Child Welfare Committee (CWC) intervened and demanded documents pertaining to the survivor’s age. It was only after their intervention that some headway was made in the case and the accused was arrested on September 3. He was charged under relevant sections of the Indian Penal Code, Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act and Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POSCO) Act.   

But when the CWC team visited the girl’s house, they found that the police had violated another key provision vis-à-vis protection of minor survivors of rape. The CWC team saw the City Kotwali police station house officer (SHO) Anoop Yadav there with the accused who was in handcuffs. As per law, a survivor should not be made to confront her alleged abuser.

On September 7, three police officials including SHO Yadav were suspended for their actions. The other two suspended officers are Sub Inspector Mohini Sharma and Assistant Sub Inspector Gurudutt Shesha.


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