Dalit woman set on fire for objecting to molestation

Lucknow, Feb 22 (IANS) A group of men allegedly set a 25-year-old Dalit woman on fire after she objected to molestation by them in Uttar Pradesh’s Kannauj district, police said Monday.

The incident took place late Sunday evening in Kannauj, some 250 km from Lucknow, where Altaf and two of his aides set the Dalit woman on fire. With severe burn injuries, the woman was being treated in a hospital, where her condition was critical.

‘While the Dalit woman, a resident of Tajpur town in Kannauj, was on her way to a shop, Altaf and his friends, also from the same town, intercepted her. After passing lewd remarks at the woman, they started molesting her. As the woman raised an alarm, an irked Altaf, who was carrying a kerosene container, poured the oil on the woman and set her afire,’ a police officer said.

A case has been registered against the three men, who are absconding.

‘Efforts are on the nab the culprits. To ascertain the whereabouts of those absconding, we have detained some of their family members,’ Deputy Superintendent of Police Hardev Singh told reporters in Kannauj.

Meanwhile, members of the Dalit community took to the streets Monday morning, demanding an immediate action against those involved in the incident.

‘Taking into account the series of protests, additional security has been deployed in the town,’ said Singh.

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