Kaithal, Oct. 11 -- A five-month pregnant married Dalit woman, 19, was allegedly abducted and raped by two men in northern Haryana's Kaithal district, leaving the state reeling under the impact of the 15th reported sexual assault on its women within a month. The incident came to light on Wednesday, a day after Congress president Sonia Gandhi visited the family of a 15-year-old rape victim in Jind district who committed suicide.
Kaithal police have arrested the two accused, Rakesh and Pawan, on the woman's complaint, said district superintendent of police Kuldeep Singh.
According to the woman, the accused abducted her around 4am on Tuesday when she had gone out of her house to answer nature's call.
Singh said, "Investigation has revealed a call was made from the woman's phone to accused Rakesh at 3.20am on Tuesday. The call details and other evidence will be placed in court."
The series of rapes have raised a political storm in Haryana, where the powerful khaps have suggested lowering the marriageable age of boys and girls to 16 years to curb incidents of sexual assault.
On Tuesday, Gandhi had taken on the khaps, saying law was solely in the hands of the judiciary. Former Haryana chief minister and INLD leader Om Prakash Chautla, however, supported the khap panchayats' suggestion on Wednesday, citing a Mughal-era practice.
"The Mughal sultanate in this country used to misbehave with women... to prevent that, people started getting their young girls married early so that no one did anything wrong to them. currently a similar situation is arising in the state."
In Delhi, Union home minister Sushilkumar Shinde said the Centre was monitoring the situation in Haryana.
Published by HT Syndication with permission from Hindustan Times.