Even as in a belated move, the State Human Rights Commission in Monday issued notice to the Mayawati government on the issue of rising crime against women, yet another rape of a minor girl was reported from Sitapur district, about 90 km from Lucknow, giving Uttar Pradesh the dubious distinction of a graph of six rapes in a single day.
While 12-year-old Saleha was allegedly raped and gagged to death late in the afternoon, her badly bruised body was discovered from a sugarcane field in Ganwapur village under Sadarpur police station around 10 pm after the family went around desperately searching for her.
The girl had gone missing while returning home after attending madrasa classes in another neighbouring village.
According to a First Information Report lodged by the victim's father Sarfuddin, "My daughter had gone with her younger brother for their routine madrasa classes; while they were on their way back, it started raining so my daughter took shelter under some tree, while her brother managed to come back home."
He said, "when the girl did not return home until sunset, we really got worried and went looking for her all over the place. Finally we found her body lying in a pool of blood in a sugarcane field; her mouth was gagged and her clothes all torn."
Sitapur district magistrate Sanjay Kumar, who rushed to the spot soon after the matter hit the headlines on TV, admitted, "Prima facie it was a clear cut case of rape and murder. But since the victim's family had not named any suspect, the FIR was registered against "unnamed" persons.
"I am confident of bringing the guilty to book very soon", he said.