New Delhi: “If he is not hanged, then my existence is worth nothing.” This was the first thing the Unnao rape survivor said when this reporter met her in Delhi.
The “he” in question is former BJP MLA Kuldeep Singh Sengar, who was convicted by a special court Monday for raping the woman, who was 16 years old at the time, in Uttar Pradesh’s Unnao in June 2017.
The rape survivor, who a couple of weeks ago returned from Delhi’s AIIMS where she was being treated for her injuries suffered in an accident on 28 July, has been staying in the national capital — with 8 CRPF constables deployed for her security.
A Delhi court had ordered the Delhi Commission for Women (DCW) to provide accommodation to the rape survivor under witness protection guidelines after she apprehended threat in her home state.
The accident in July led to the death of two of her aunts, and her lawyer was also critically injured.
“We have not even performed terahnvi (a funeral ritual) of our three family members (her father and two aunts). If Sengar manages to remain alive, then he will kill me too,” said the woman, tears rolling down her cheeks.
The first death in the woman’s family — in the aftermath of the rape — was of her father’s. He died under mysterious circumstances after allegedly being attacked inside the jail by Sengar’s associates.
“When he got to know about the rape, he got furious and reached Sengar’s house looking for him. Sengar’s goons had thrashed him brutally there also,” the woman’s mother told ThePrint.
One of Sengar’s associates, Shashi Singh, who was named in the CBI charge sheet for criminal conspiracy, kidnapping, criminal intimidation and under sections of POCSO, (Protection of Children from Sexual Offences), has been acquitted of all charges.
Singh was allegedly present in the verandah while the woman was being raped by Sengar.
The rape survivor now fears a threat to her life from Singh.
“It was she (Singh) who had taken me to Sengar with the promise of a job. Why does the court feel that after spending one year behind the bar, she will let us go after coming out of jail? During court hearings, Singh’s older son used to threaten us. Singh’s younger son Shubham has also raped me,” the woman told ThePrint.
Also read: Unnao survivor tells her story: After raping, he wiped my tears & said he’d get me a job
‘They raped me for nine days, my body started stinking’
The woman gave the details of the horrific and spine-chilling account of her nine-day sexual assault a few days after Sengar raped her.
“Sengar raped me on 7 July 2017. Four days after the incident, on 11 July, I went to fetch water from a tap installed outside his house (in a village in Unnao). Some men sitting inside a car parked there dragged me inside the vehicle. From there, they took me to Unnao (city). There, these men used to drink and repeatedly rape me,” she alleged.
The woman also said that these men invited their friends too.
“While one would rape me, others would drink in the same room. The rooms where I was raped had no windows and so I couldn’t escape. For nine days, they kept feeding me but did not let me change my clothes or take a shower. I started to stink, but still, they kept raping me.”
According to the woman, the men on the ninth day left her at a house in the city and she got to know that she has been sold to someone for Rs 60,000. “But the police arrived at the house soon and I was rescued,” she says.
The rape survivor alleged that all these men have links with Sengar.
‘Are you the same girl?’
The rape survivor said when she came to Delhi to stay at her uncle’s house last year, people would ask her — ‘Are you the same girl?’
“It has stuck with me now,” she added.
“I am not being able to gather the courage to stand in my own balcony and face the world. For me, my whole life has turned into a prison.”
The woman and her family, however, expressed their gratitude to the media and to DCW chief Swati Maliwal, who helped them get accommodation in Delhi.
“If she had not helped and if the media had not come forward to help us, then we might have had no other option but to die,” said the rape survivor.
Also read: ‘Patriarchal approach, insensitive’ — how Delhi court hauled up CBI over Unnao rape probe
Life imprisonment, with no bail, parole, furlough. As a great man said in another context, Chakki Pissing, pissing, pissing.
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