A 22 year old photojournalist was gang raped by five men on Thursday evening at the dilapidated Shakti Mills compound in Lower Parel, south Mumbai. The young woman’s condition is now described as stable by doctors attending to her at the Jaslok Hospital.
She works with a magazine in the city as an intern and was on assignment with a male colleague when she was brutally attacked, soon after they had entered the compound at 6 pm.
In details chillingly similar to the December gang-rape in Delhi, the woman and her friend have described in their statements to the police how two men accosted them at the mill, beat up and tied her colleague with a belt and then dragged her into a run down, abandoned building, where three other men joined them and gang-raped the young woman.
The woman fell unconscious and regained consciousness only at about 8 pm. The attackers had fled by then. The photojournalist and her colleague took an auto rickshaw to the Jaslok Hospital four kilometres away and doctors called in the police.
Twenty people were detained overnight and this morning the police released sketches of five suspects based on the statements.
The woman reportedly gave the police names of two attackers who had addressed each other. Most of the attackers are believed to be in their early 20s and Mumbai’s police commissioner Satyapal Singh said he suspected they were drug addicts who live in the area.
The audacity and horror of the crime has stunned Mumbai, a city that prides itself on being safe for women. The Shakti Mills compound is isolated, but it is in the middle of Mumbai and right next to the crowded Mahalakshmi station. South Mumbai MP Milind Deora tweeted, “Mumbai Police must get to the bottom of yesterday’s alleged rape and punish the guilty ASAP. Mumbai takes pride in being a safe city for women.”
Last December, a 23-year-old medical student was brutally gang-raped by six men in a moving bus in Delhi. She died 13 days later. The horrific assault had provoked nation-wide protests and demands for better protection for women and more stringent laws against rape.
Short URL: http://indiawires.com/?p=25816