Saturday, March 16, 2013

A Swiss woman who was on a cycling trip in central India with her husband has been gang-raped by eight men

The attack comes three months after the fatal gang-rape of a woman aboard a New Delhi bus outraged Indians. Authorities detained and questioned 13 men in connection with the latest attack, which occurred as the couple camped out in a forest in Madhya Pradesh state after bicycling from the temple town of Orchha, local police officer R.K. Gurjar said. The men beat the couple and gang-raped the woman. They also stole the couple's mobile phone, a laptop computer and 10,000 rupees ($185). The woman, 39, was treated at a hospital in the nearby city of Gwalior. A photo showed the woman walking while being escorted by police to the hospital. Her face was concealed with a hood, a common practice in India, where law does not allow rape victims to be identified publicly to protect them from the stigma attached to rape in the backward country. Recently, the Swiss government issued a travel notice for India that included a warning about increasing numbers of rapes and other sexual offenses in the South Asian nation. India has seen outrage and widespread protests against attacks on women since December 2012's fatal gang-rape of a young woman on a moving bus in New Delhi, the capital. The crime horrified Indians and set off nationwide protests about India's treatment of women and spurred the government to hurry through a new package of laws to protect them. One of six suspects in the December 2012 attack was found dead in a New Delhi jail recently. Authorities said that he hanged himself, but his family and lawyer insisted foul play was involved. A magistrate is investigating. Four other men and a juvenile remain on trial for the attack.

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