India orders death sentence for rapists of 8-year-old | News | DW | 21.08.2018
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India orders death sentence for rapists of 8-year-old

The sentence is one of the first under a new law allowing for speedy trials and death penalties for child rapists. The brutal rape of the class 2 student in June sparked angry protests.

A court in the central Indian state of Madhya Pradesh has sentenced two men to death for raping an 8-year-old girl in the city of Mandsaur.

The investigation and trial of the gruesome case, which sparked angry protests, was completed in less than two months, a welcome change in a country where court cases can drag on for years.

The sentence is one of the first ordered under a new law allowing for speedy investigations and trials in rape cases and death penalties for child rapists.

The two convicts, aged 20 and 24, lured the class 2 student from outside her school as she waited for her father. They took her to a secluded spot and gang-raped her.

The two slashed her neck and left her to die. The victim is still recovering in hospital.

Read moreCaste dynamics behind sexual violence in India

Rape epidemic

The case was among a string of violent sexual crimes against minors in India this year, which have sparked protests across the country.

Responding to nationwide outrage, the government in April introduced the death penalty for rapists of girls under 12. The new law also prescribed faster trials for rape cases.

India has among the highest number of rapes in the world. Some 40,000 rape cases were reported in the country in 2016 — nearly 110 rapes per day.

Experts say that despite a rise in the reporting of rape in recent years, most cases still go unreported, mainly because victims fear stigma or retribution.

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