16-year old girl allegedly raped in Ganderbal, accused arrested

Srinagar youths protest Sumbal toddler’s rape

The Kashmir valley also came to a halt on Monday, with protesters clashing with police and paramilitary forces at several places, and schools and businesses shut across the region. Security forces resorted to tear gas shelling to quell the protesting youth who were pelting stones.

Thousands of people have taken to the streets in Indian-administered Kashmir to protest the alleged rape of a 3-year-old girl by a neighbor who lured her to a school bathroom.

The protesters demanded that the accused be hanged and justice delivered at earliest.

Students of Kashmir University, Central University and the Islamic University of Science and Technology boycotted classes and held protests.

Calling for calm, Bandipora Deputy Commissioner Shahbaz Mirza said, "The heinous crime of rape of a minor in Bandipora is under investigation". "We are treating the accused as a major and not as a juvenile", a police official told India's PTI news agency.

Additional Director General of Police Munir Khan said the accused was arrested hours after an official complaint was filed by the parents of the victim.

"One of the injured protesters is critically wounded", Pani said.

According to the Indian Express, the girl was allegedly raped on Wednesday before iftar in the Sumbal area of Bandipora district, following which widespread protests broke out across the Valley on Sunday. Students from different colleges staged protests, demanding capital punishment to the culprit. A youth in Mirgund area was seriously injured in clashes with security forces.




Medical examination has confirmed rape and the arrested accused has been booked under rape charges and POCSO (Protection of Children from Sexual Offences), a senior police officer said.

As a mark of solidarity with the rape victim, the Jammu and Kashmir High Court Bar Association (JKHCBA) on Monday remained abstained from court work.

Police have detained the principal of the accused's school for issuing a birth certificate which states he is 16 years old.

All political parties, religious and social groups have condemned the incident.

"These child rapists are out there because we have failed as a society".

Another separatist leader with a wide following in Kashmir, Syed Ali Geelani, said the alleged crime was "a black stain on the social fabric" of Kashmir.

Mufti Nasir-ul Islam, chairman of the Jammu and Kashmir Muslim Personal Law Board and the Valley's Mufti Azam, echoed Mehbooba's call to say there was a need to enforce Shariah law in such cases.

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