Spanish woman gang-raped in Jharkhand’s Dumka, three detained - Hindustan Times
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Spanish woman gang-raped in Jharkhand’s Dumka, three detained

ByPraduman Choubey, Dhanbad
Mar 02, 2024 09:40 PM IST

According to officials close to the matter, the incident came to light at around 11 p.m. on Friday when the patrolling team of Hansdiha Police in Dumka spotted two people near the road but couldn’t comprehend their language as they were speaking Spanish.

A Spanish woman travelling along with her husband from West Bengal to Nepal was allegedly gang-raped by seven people on Friday night in Kurmahat village in the Dumka district of Jharkhand, police said, adding that three of the accused were detained in connection with the case.

The Spanish woman was allegedly gang-raped by seven people on Friday night in Kurmahat village in the Dumka district. (HT File)
The Spanish woman was allegedly gang-raped by seven people on Friday night in Kurmahat village in the Dumka district. (HT File)

Besides the sexual assault on the woman, who is in her mid-30s, the couple was also thrashed by the accused and robbed of cash and other belongings as they resisted the crime.

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Dumka superintendent of police (SP) Pitambar Singh Kherwar said three accused were detained while special teams formed to crack the case are conducting raids to apprehend the others.

According to officials close to the matter, the incident came to light at around 11 p.m. on Friday when the patrolling team of Hansdiha Police in Dumka spotted two people near the road but couldn’t comprehend their language as they were speaking Spanish.

“The duo later narrated the incident to the police team using Google translation, and the police team took them to Saraiyahat Community Health Centre, where the gang rape of the woman was confirmed,” one of the officials said.

Senior police officers who reached the hospital and took details from the survivor detained three people, who provided some clues about the incident and also collected some forensic evidence.

SP Kherwar said, “Our team came to know about the incident last night, and after confirmation of the incident of outraging the modesty of the woman following medical examination and based on the survivor’s statement and our inputs, three persons were detained.”

The SP said one of the detainees confessed to the crime, provided some clues about the incident and divulged information about other accused persons.

“The duo had not given any information to the police/administration regarding the setting up of a temporary camp in the village,” said Kherwar, adding that a probe team led by Santosh Kumar, sub-divisional police officer (SDPO) of Jarmundi, has been constituted to investigate the case.

Officials said the couple, on a tourist visa in India as part of their world tour on a bike, visited Pakistan and Bangladesh before entering the country through West Bengal.

“They were heading towards Nepal through Dumka. They put up a makeshift tent in the forest of Kunji Basti, about two kilometres from Kurmahat, after reaching there around 5 p.m. on Friday. The incident took place when some local youths attacked them, after which they gang-raped the woman,” the above-cited official said.

SDPO Santosh Kumar said, “We have lodged a first information report (FIR) in the case on the complaint of the victim women. The three people are still under detention. After completion of primary investigation, it may turn into arrest.”

Meanwhile, a video of the couple narrating the crime in Spanish went viral on social media.

In the English transcription, the couple emphasised that while the accused robbed some of their belongings, their main motive was to rape her.

The incident sparked political furore in the state, with Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) legislator from neighbouring Godda, Amit Mandal, raising the issue in the state assembly, accusing the police of trying to protect the accused persons and demanding the removal of Dumka SP.

He said, “Such an incident, which took place at Hansdiha in Dumka, has tarnished the image of the state while the government is busy with other issues.”

“We will not allow the perpetrators of such incidents to evade arrest and demand stringent punishment for them,” added Mandal.

Godda MP Nishikant Dubey targeted the state government through a social media post, accusing it of posting untrained police officers in the Santhal Pargana division, “who are abetting murder, loot, and rape for the last four years”.

Dubey said, “Dumka is the home place of the Soren family (Hemant Soren), but one will be surprised to know that the tribal people are decreasing in the district and tribal women are also being raped.”

“The recent incident is the culmination of ongoing misrule in the area, and we can say in this state neither the women nor the Dalits and others are safe.”

BJP state president Babulal Marandi said the collapsed law and order situation of the state led to the incident of gang rape, tarnishing the state’s image on the global stage.

“The government should have immediately suspended all the police officers for the negligence in the issue. On one hand, there is talk of tourism promotion, and on the other hand, such incidents are taking place. Who will dare to come to Jharkhand after such incidents?” Marandi said.

Responding to the incident, ruling Congress MLA from Jamtara, Irfan Ansari, said, “We will ensure strict punishment for those involved in the incident case after arresting them and ensure their speedy trial.”

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