Girl kills herself after facing pressure to marry her rapist (Reuters)

A 14-year-old girl from Jharkhand in India has taken her own life after being raped and then pressured to marry her attacker.

The girl is believed to have eaten poison a week after she was raped by a 24-year-old man.

She was attacked on her way home from school by the man, who lived in the same village as her.

After she told her family, the man was caught and beaten by locals and taken to the police station, NDTV reports. He was then arrested by the authorities.

However, since the attack, the man's family has repeatedly threatened the girl, demanding she drop the rape charges. They also put pressure on the girl to marry him.

The girl's mother said: "The family of the accused came to us and demanded that we compromise. They also said we should let our daughter marry him. They threatened to frame us with false charges."

Police superintendent Hemant Tobbo confirmed the girl's death: "[She] died after consuming poison last night."

Culture of rape

Another relative said the attacker should face the death penalty for his crime, saying: "We have lost our daughter forever. We only want justice now, the accused should be hanged."

The problem of rape in India has gained worldwide attention following the death penalty given to four men who gang raped and murdered a 23-year-old student in New Delhi last December.

The lawyer defending the men also gained widespread criticism and faces losing his licence after saying he would have "burned my daughter alive" if she had "premarital sex and went out late at night with her boyfriend".

Following the sentence, Tara Rao, director of Amnesty International India, said the death penalty would not end sexual violence in India.

"While the widespread anger over this case is understandable, authorities must avoid using the death penalty as a 'quick-fix' solution. There is no evidence that the death penalty is a particular deterrent to crime, and its use will not eradicate violence against women in India," she said.

Judge Yogesh Khanna also said the men's deaths will not stop violence against women: "Eliminating these men will not eliminate the culture of rape. The deep misogyny of potential assailants, as well as many actors within the criminal justice system needs to shift."

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