Crime & Justice

Neighbors’ silence hangs over girl’s brutal murder in India

New Delhi, May 30 (EFE).- When asked about the brutal murder of a 16-year-old girl in the middle of the street on Sunday night with dozens of people looking on without intervening, residents of Shahbad Dairy, a slum in northern New Delhi, are silent.

Despite the fact that a security camera recorded how several people passed by while the assailant stabbed and repeatedly hit the girl with a huge stone, no local residents recognize the people seen in the video who did nothing to prevent the attack.

“Everyone protects his life, everyone loves his life, I do not know what happened, I found out yesterday when people from the media started coming,” Shahbad Dairy resident Anita Kumari, told EFE on Tuesday, lamenting that such incidents are increasingly common in this area north of the capital.

She is one of the dozens of people whose morbid curiosity led them to approach the place of the attack on Tuesday, where there is no longer any trace of the murder beyond a mound of stone blocks like the one used by the assailant against his victim. Children play on the pile of rocks, apparently oblivious to what happened there less than 48 hours ago.

The street is only about 25 meters away from the neighborhood’s main artery, and is flanked by several half-ruined houses on one side and a lot converted into a landfill on the other. It serves to access the poorest areas of the neighborhood, where the victim lived.

Outside the teenager’s home, about 20 police officers guard the house in front of a large crowd of dozens of curious onlookers. The rest of the neighbors look on at the huge deployment of media and police.

Some of them regret that this type of crime has become “common” in the neighborhood, something that was already clear when two girls under eight years old did not hesitate to bring journalists to the area where the murder was committed as if it were a regular occurrence.


New Delhi was the most unsafe Indian city for women in 2021, according to the latest data from India’s National Crime Records Bureau.

The capital recorded 13,982 crimes against women, double the 5.543 in Mumbai, the second metropolis on the list. These figures, added to the latest crime of Shahbad Dairy, show a worrying tolerance on the part of a conservative Indian society towards attacks against women.

“This is proof that women here are not safe at all (…) If a group of four people together had stopped this, then none of this would have happened. Everyone washes their hands, one must dare to act when necessary,” another young neighbor, who did not want to give her name, told EFE.The attacker, 20, who was reportedly the victim’s boyfriend, has been taken to New Delhi after being arrested Monday by police in the state of Uttar Pradesh, neighboring the Indian capital.

According to police, he admitted that he had had a fight with her the day before the murder and was angry because she had been ignoring him and she wanted to break up with him.

The brutality of the incident has shocked India and the young woman’s relatives called for the accused to be given the death penalty, a punishment on the rise in the country that last year saw 165 people sentenced to death, according to a report by a research center attached to the University of Law in New Delhi.

India recorded 428,278 crimes against women in 2021, up 15.3% from the previous year, with violence by a husband or family member being the most common assault accounting for 31.8% of cases.EFE


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