New Delhi: A 16-year-old boy was allegedly gang raped multiple times, forced to undergo a sex reassignment surgery, beaten, and pushed into begging as well as prostitution by five men in Delhi for the past several months.
The matter came to light Friday in a statement released by the Delhi Commission for Women (DCW). “Shubham (name changed) was intoxicated and brutally beaten up. After a few days, he was forced into a sex change operation. At that time he was only 13 years old. Shubham told that he was given hormones to make him look like a girl,” the DCW statement read.
Sanjay Kumar Sain, additional DCP, Shahdara, confirmed to ThePrint that an FIR was registered against the five accused at the Geeta Colony police station on 24 December after the boy’s family approached DCW. Two of the accused, one of them a juvenile, were arrested on the same day the FIR was registered, Sain added, while the other three are absconding.
The accused have been booked under Sections 377 (unnatural offences), 363 (kidnapping), 326 (voluntarily causing grievous hurt by dangerous weapons), 506 (criminal intimidation), 341 (wrongful restrain) of the IPC and provisions under the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act.
“They removed my genitals and made me a eunuch. I am neither a boy nor a girl now,” the boy told ThePrint.
The station house officer (SHO) of Geeta Colony police station, who didn’t want to be named, however denied the allegations of a sex reassignment surgery on the boy.
“There has been no change in his sex. Only a small surgery was conducted, a part of his penis was removed. That’s all. It is a false allegation,” the SHO told ThePrint.
ThePrint has a copy of the hospital’s medical report, provided by the victim, that states a “sex reassignment surgery” was conducted on 24 September 2019. The hospital, however, refused to comment on it.
‘Forced to undergo sex change surgery’
The boy told ThePrint that he met three of the accused men in 2017, when he was 13, during a dance event.
“I love dancing and that’s how I came in contact with them, in Delhi’s Laxmi Nagar area. They promised to help me earn money and I believed them, since I also wanted to continue with my studies. Initially, they were very nice to me, and we would go for dance events, like jagrans, together,” the boy said.
The accused, said the boy, began abusing him after earning his trust.
“They began regularly intoxicating me. For a whole year, I couldn’t understand what they were doing to me. My parents also didn’t know about it,” he added. The teenager said the men forced him to stay with them in Delhi’s Mandawali area.
By 2018, the boy claimed, he was no longer allowed to visit his parents, both of whom are daily wage labourers. He has an elder brother who drives an e-rickshaw.
The teenager said he was taken to a hospital in the capital city in 2019 and forced to undergo a “sex change” operation. “I was always intoxicated. I only remember that they forced me to sign a document at the hospital under the name of one ‘Gunjan’. They threatened to kill my family if I protested. The men had also started giving me hormone pills and injections by then. And they wouldn’t let me sleep, taking turns to rape me throughout the night,” the boy added.
The minor’s mother said she was called by the accused to visit the boy after the surgery. “I was called because my son was bleeding heavily. I was terrified looking at what they had done to him. But when I told them that I will go to the police, one of them flashed a gun and threatened to kill my son,” she told ThePrint.
‘Fled captors during lockdown’
It was only when another boy (age unknown), who is known to the minor survivor, was brought to the accused’s house that the 16-year-old gathered some “strength” to fight his captors.
“By then, I was forcefully raped by many customers. I would bleed profusely but they kept raping me over and over again. I can’t see without my spectacles, but they never let me wear it. I was also made to beg on the streets as a eunuch,” he added.
Sometime in March last year, during the Covid-19-induced lockdown, the two boys managed to flee their ‘captors’. They reached the 16-year-old’s house in Geeta Colony and the teenager’s mother later found a rented accommodation to “hide” the boys.
“We didn’t immediately complain because the accused had earlier told us they would kill everyone in the family,” the mother said.
The accused allegedly found the boys’ new location in December, thrashed the mother and both boys, and robbed them of their belongings. Both boys were also allegedly brought back to Mandawali, where the 16-year old was raped again.
“We managed to run away within two days. A lawyer later found us and took us to the DCW office,” the teenager said.
The lawyer, Sujeet Samrat, who encouraged the teenager’s mother to approach the DCW and lodge a complaint, said the accused had also broken the 16-year-old’s wrist.