A 15-year-old orphan girl from a northern Indian state, who was sold to different men multiple times, eventually escaped two years of sexual abuse and torture on Sunday (28 January). She reportedly ran away from her abuser's house and was found in a dire state by two unknown people.
Based on her complaint, police are currently on the lookout for two men whom she accused of raping and torturing her — a placement agency owner Surender and a shopkeeper Mishra. Surender has reportedly been escaping arrest since Sunday.
The tribal girl from a small district, Godda, in Jharkhand state told police that her ordeal began after her parents died in an accident. Her grandmother moved to their house to take care of her and her brothers but, once there, she began ill-treating her and even sold her to Surender, who lives in Indian capital New Delhi. "Since there was no one to care for me and my brothers, my grandmother shifted to our house. She treated us badly and finally sold me to Surender for 4,000 Indian rupees (£44, $62)," the victim reportedly told The Times of India newspaper.
"He thrashed me and raped me the moment we stepped into his house [in Delhi]. However, when he wanted me hired by a couple in Delhi [to work as a maid], he did not beat me for some days so I would not appear bruised and battered," she told the paper. She said she was fine as long as she was working at the Delhi couple's house, but once her contract expired, Surender brought her back and sold her to Mishra.
Mishra was "ten times worse" than Surender, she said, adding: "He always threatened me with a red kitchen knife, and gagged me if I resisted or tried to scream. He tied my legs and burnt them with cigarettes if I tried to free myself." She said that he would rape her even while his wife and two children were in the house in the adjoining room.
The teenager also said that Mishra even took away the money she had earned at the Delhi couple's house.
Police have reportedly registered a case under relevant sections of the Indian Penal Code, Juvenile Justice Act and Protection of Children from Sexual Offences Act.
The deputy commissioner of police, Bhupinder Singh said: "A special team has been formed to track the accused and their families. Our team is catching up to them. We will also verify if the girl's grandmother had a role to play in her misery."
The girl is currently undergoing treatment at a hospital in Faridabad city, roughly 60km from New Delhi.