A 31-year old woman was thrown out of a moving vehicle in India's north-eastern state of Assam. Onlookers who saw her fall out of the vehicle took her to hospital where she died of severe injuries on her head and limbs.
The incident is being widely perceived as a gang rape, similar to the one which happened a year ago in Delhi, when a young student was brutally gang raped in a moving bus.
The brutal murder and alleged rape in Assam have likewise provoked street protests and rallies in the state. Activists from All-Assam Students Union and women's rights organisations are reportedly amassing in front of the local police station, demanding arrest of the perpetrators of the gruesome attack.
The woman was on her way to pick up her six-year-old daughter from school and is said to have boarded a shared tempo before she was found lying on the highway with fatal injuries.
Assam State Commission for Women has registered a suo motu case of rape and murder on the basis of media reports and has asked police to conduct a speedy inquiry, according to Indian Express.
Assam government has set up a Special Investigation Team (SIT) to go "deeper" into the case of this alleged gang rape and brutal assault.
The police say they are not ruling out planned murder.
In a new twist to the case, rape angle is being ruled out by PK Bhuyan, Superintendent of Police. He reportedly said that the woman died of severe head injuries.
"I am yet to physically receive the post mortem report. However, my officers who are in Guwahati obtained the post mortem report today (Wednesday), which ruled out any rape angle. The woman died due to severe head injuries," Bhuyan said.
The motive of the murder is still unknown, but efforts are on to crack through the case as early as possible amidst intensifying public pressure.
"We are setting up a special investigation team in view of the huge public outcry. This we are doing despite the post-mortem report confirming that there was no sexual intercourse whatsoever," GD Tripathi, state Home Secretary, told The Indian Express.
The police have arrested one person on Wednesday night in connection with the case.
"We are currently examining the case from various angles. Police are also examining the call details of the woman's mobile phone on the basis of which one person has been arrested. The person was in regular touch with the woman," Bhuyan said.
The autopsy performed on the 30-year-old woman indicates that she died due to injuries inflicted on her by a blunt object, according to the latest reports.