Anger in India over two rapes puts government in bind

Shooter Tejaswini wins CWG gold Anjum takes silver

Shooter Tejaswini wins CWG gold Anjum takes silver

The retired official, Sanji Ram, ordered his nephew and a policeman to kidnap the girl, Asifa, in January to terrorise members of her nomadic Bakerwal community into leaving Kathua district in the mainly Hindu Jammu division, according to a court filing.

She was then raped by him and other men joined in before she was taken to the temple, where she was kept her inside a prayer hall under the table, covering her with the plastic mats, the charged sheet reads.

Her strangled body was later found in the forest near the temple with one of the three suspected rapists said to be a policeman.

"It is shocking that it took those stars who lashed at Shahid Afridi for raising voice against killings in Kashmir three months to tweet and condemn Asifa's rape and murder". Er. All eight are Hindu. Moreover, some of the police officers who investigated the case are also Muslim, prompting concerns of injustice in the Hindu community.

The practice has continued for generations, but in recent years the nomads have faced growing hostility from Hindu residents in the region, who claim they are encroaching on their land.

Most of the disputes centre around land.

Police say the young girl, who belonged to a Muslim nomadic community known as the Bakarwals, was abducted while grazing horses in a meadow on January 12. For centuries they have migrated every summer to highland pastures and forests, and returned to the plains of Jammu in winter to graze their animals, living in temporary shelters. To add to the volatility of Asifa's case, police say she was killed in a Hindu temple, and that the temple's custodian plotted her death as a way to torment the Bakarwals.

But over the past 20 years some have begun settling in permanent homes, usually built in forests, sparking conflicts with people already living in those areas. Hindu activists argue that some of the police officers who worked on the case are, like Asifa, Muslims - and can not be trusted, according to the Times.

The killing has provoked shock and anger across Indian, and exposed the deep cultural divides which still exist between Muslims and Hindus in Kashmir.

"Politics apart, this is frightful that some people would see this horrendous crime through a religious prism to gain some mileage". To an extent, it did - for example, the government amended the law to prosecute children older than 16 as adults in rape and murder cases. WhileIndia's dominant political force, the Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party, are pushing to have the case taken out of the hands of the state police, arguing that the Central Bureau of Investigation would be a more neutral agency to handle it.

While the BJP's defence of the accused has been "loud" at the state level, at the centre, its silence has been deafening, wrote Monobina Gupta, managing editor of The Wire news website, referring to Modi's lack of comment on the case. Her raped and mutilated body was found in the woods a week later.

The Jammu and Kashmir state government, led by chief minister, Mehbooba Mufti has staunchly denied accusations that proper procedures have been skirted during the investigation.

Opposition leader Rahul Gandhi held a candlelit vigil at India Gate in New Delhi, the same site where thousands of people demonstrated in 2012 against a brutal gang-rape in the capital.

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