In a devastating incident, a Dalit minor girl who had attempted suicide by self-immolation after being raped by a youth leader of CPI(M) in Kerala’s Kattappana last week, succumbed to her injuries at the Medical College Hospital in Thiruvananthapuram on Saturday.
According to the reports, the 16-year-old Dalit victim girl had set herself on fire by pouring kerosene on herself after a 24-year-old Manu Manoj, a member of CPI(M)’s youth wing DYFI, had raped her a week ago at Nariampara, Idukki district. The minor Dalit girl had suffered more than 60 per cent burn, and she was first admitted at the Kottayam Medical College Hospital.
She was later shifted to Thiruvananthapuram for advanced treatment. However, on Saturday, her condition deteriorated and succumbed to her injuries. A postmortem will be done after which her body will be handed over to the family.
Reportedly, the family of the victim had filed a complaint against the youth leader of CPI(M) citing sexual assault on October 22. Depressed over the assault, the Dalit girl had attempted suicide by setting herself on fire on October 23.
The accused Manu then went absconding but he was arrested on October 24. The police registered cases under sections of the POCSO Act and also under the SC and ST (Prevention of Atrocities) Act.
According to reports, accused Manu Manoj has been ousted from DYFI after the news of his crime emerged. Officials of the DYFI in Idukki district had confirmed he had a membership in the party but didn’t hold any post. “He was not a local leader nor held any positions. He just had membership in DYFI and was ousted as soon as the issue about the case surfaced,” said a DYFI official. Manu Manoj works as an autorickshaw driver.