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Indian court allows abortion for 10-year-old rape victim

17 May 2017

The forensic team that conducted the investigation said that the victim was gang raped.

India has a gruesome record on rape, with New Delhi alone registering 2199 rape cases in 2015 - an average of six a day.

The mother had alleged that the girl's stepfather had threatened the victim with dire consequences if she dared to disclose it to anyone.

Perpetrators still "feel they can get away with crimes against women", said Jagmati Sangwan, of the All India Democratic Women's Association.

Activists say the restriction should be extended to 24 weeks as victims of rape are often late to report their pregnancies.

But those numbers are still considered only a fraction of the actual rape cases across the socially conservative country. "I want him to be released and my daughter's child to be aborted", the mother said. Indian law prohibits disclosing the names of rape victims.

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"The question of women's safety is not a priority for the police", Sangwan said.

Notably, last week, the decomposed and mutilated body of a 23-year-old woman, who went missing from Sonipat on 9 May and was gang-raped and brutally murdered, was found near the Industrial Model Township in Urban Estate, Rohtak, on 11 May.

A minor girl from Rohtak has written to the police alleging rape and blackmail by two persons at gunpoint.

In another incident, a 22-year-old woman from Sikkim was allegedly raped by three men in a moving vehicle in Gurgaon and thrown out on a road.

The stepfather, who is also the child's paternal uncle, was arrested and is now in jail, according to police, who added that the abuse had been going on for years. Police are searching for suspects.

Both attacks took place in the north Indian state of Haryana, where Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar told reporters that the cases would be tried in a fast-track court.

Indian court allows abortion for 10-year-old rape victim