Father of Gang Rape Victim Refuses State Payout

Demands federal inquiry in India into hanging of 2 teens
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted May 31, 2014 7:32 AM CDT
Father of Gang Rape Victim Refuses State Payout
Members of Jawaharlal Nehru University Students Union shout slogans as they participate in a protest against a gang rape in Katra village, outside the Uttar Pradesh state house, in New Delhi, India.   (Manish Swarup)

Police arrested a third suspect today in the gang rape and slaying of two teenage cousins found hanging from a tree in northern India. Authorities in Uttar Pradesh state, meanwhile, also arrested two police officers and fired two others for failing to investigate when the father of one of the teens reported the girls missing earlier in the week. "I don't expect justice from the state government as state police officers shielded the suspects," said Lal, a farm laborer who refused to accept $8,500 offered by the state government. He said he would accept no financial assistance until the Central Bureau of Investigation, India's FBI, takes over the case.

Such government payments are common in India when poor families face high-profile calamities, and Lal's unusual refusal—particularly for a man living in desperate poverty—was likely to focus attention on his demands for a federal investigation. It seems to be working: Uttar Pradesh's top elected official said he would recommend a CBI inquiry to the federal government. The three suspects detained in the attack are cousins in their 20s from an extended family, and they face murder and rape charges. Two other suspects from the same village are also being sought. (More India stories.)

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