Teen raped and murdered, physique stuffed in sack; trucker arrested

GURUGRAM: The brutal and of a 16-year-old girl, whose head was repeatedly smashed with a brick and her body stuffed in a sack allegedly by a truck driver on Monday evening, has left residents of village, on the left-hand-side of NH-8 towards Jaipur on the outskirts of Gurugram, shocked.
Her 23-year-old sister still can’t fathom why she was killed. “It could have been any other woman, including myself,” she told TOI.

She had spotted the killer flee as she returned home from tuition, after having worked in a computer training centre in the afternoon, and alerted villagers who chased and caught him. Between sobs, she said, “I want that man hanged or burnt to death in front of me.”

Police on Tuesday said the post mortem of the girl had confirmed rape. Badshapur SHO Arun Kumar said they are interrogating the accused Gajender, originally from Rajasthan, who is on one day remand.

The victim lived with her parents in a small corrugated tin shed on a plot of land, next to a cattle shed with four buffaloes and two calves. Beyond lay the highway, with a big, concrete storm-water drain in between. On Tuesday evening, they were left unattended as the family had gone to cremate their daughter.

Villagers said the victim’s parents are seasonal farm labourers. The girl had dropped out of school some years ago. This being lavni (harvest time), at around 5.30pm on Monday, the girl’s parents had gone to a nearby farm with the girl’s younger brother, to work as wage labourers.

Jai Kishan, one of the villagers who caught the accused, said, “When the elder sister came running for help, we didn’t know what was happening. At first, we had assumed the man had misbehaved with her, so we ran to catch him. Young men from the village joined, as he was cornered on the far side of NH-8, which is just behind the victim’s house. His clothes were all bloodied at the time.”

Phoolwati, aged around 40, who lives next door and was the last person to see the girl alive, said she couldn’t believe the girl was dead. “Their family has been living here for almost 20 years,” she said. “She was a hardworking girl and the family had no known enemies in the village,” she added. “I saw her feeding the buffaloes an hour before her sister raised the alarm. It’s harvest time, everyone in the village is busy. The criminal could have stuffed her mouth so that she couldn’t shout,” she further said.

Some villagers felt that as there is no fencing between the house and the highway, barring some firewood strewn to dry, the truck driver might have been encouraged into thinking his victim would be easy picking.

“When I entered the house on hearing the elder girl’s screams, I found the victim’s chest and head sticking out of a sack. Her face pointed downwards, she was partially undressed, and her clothes were torn,” said Gyaan Devi, a villager, among the first to respond to the cries for help.

“By the time I entered their house, there was saag and milk spilt on the floor, with blood all over. I thought I saw her ear twitch, but when others checked, she was already dead,” added Gyaan Devi, shivering all the while she narrated Monday evening’s experience. Villagers said the family were unlike other nomadic tribals, so the landlord had been kind with them. “They were poor. The landowners had allowed them to look after their cattle and live in the adjoining shed,” said Devi.

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