Four minor tribal girls raped by 20 men in Jharkhand

RANCHI: A group of around 20 armed and inebriated men forced their way into a girls' hostel in Maoist-hit Pakur district and gang raped four minor girls on Sunday night.

The incident took place at a missionary institution in Lawda village, around 400 km from Ranchi. The girls - aged between 12 and 14 years and belonging to the endangered Paharia tribe - were students of a vocational course.

The men entered the hostel premises at 11:30 pm, said an official of the school management. The hostel had no security personnel, and the men, who were carrying rifles and small firearms, had no trouble getting in. Eyewitnesses said the men carried off the girls to a nearby forest and raped them for around two hours. Some of them guarded the gates and the police could only reach the place only after midnight.

"The victims have identified two persons," said YS Ramesh, superintendent of police, Pakur.

According to police, the abductors Sunday night raided a girls' hostel at Lawada village in Pakur district, 450 km from here. They took away four girls and raped them. The abductors were armed.

The girls, aged 12 to 14 years, are from the Paharia tribe. A case has been registered. The accused are untraceable and on the run, and a hunt has now been launched to nab them, police said.

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