Anger grows over gang-rape of photographer in Mumbai
By Rachel O'Brien, AFPMUMBAI--Five men gang-raped a woman photographer in India's financial hub Mumbai, police said Friday, fuelling protests and stirring memories of a similar attack last December in New Delhi.
August 24, 2013, 12:00 am TWN
The attack took place on Thursday evening in an upmarket district of central Mumbai as the 23-year-old woman and a male colleague were taking photos of old buildings for a magazine.
The pair were approached by members of the gang and told they should not be there. The man was then tied up with a belt while the woman was raped repeatedly nearby, Mumbai's police commissioner Satyapal Singh told reporters.
“It is a shameful and extremely disturbing event,” he said.
One man in his early 20s has been arrested while the hunt is on for his four alleged accomplices, who have been identified by police. Sketches of the accused have been released.
The victim, reportedly an intern, is undergoing treatment at Mumbai's Jaslok Hospital and preliminary reports suggest multiple internal injuries, a police officer told AFP. A hospital statement said she was “stable”.
The attack, which shocked a city seen as far safer for women than the capital, happened in an abandoned mill compound next to an area of upscale apartment blocks, shops and restaurants.
On Friday, police stood watch in forested patches while others walked through overgrown grass around the cordoned-off crime scene, where greenery has crept over the walls of the derelict structure.
“We are 100-percent confident of cracking the case,” Singh said, adding that 20 police teams have been formed as part of the investigation.
The incident comes eight months after another 23-year-old woman was gang-raped by five men in a moving bus in New Delhi, while her male companion was beaten up. She died two weeks later from severe injuries.
A trial is in in its final stages in that case, which sparked massive protests and led to a tougher anti-rape law.
The new measures increased punishment for sex offenders, which now include the death penalty if a victim dies, and broadened the definition of sexual assault.