Five activists putting on a play about the horror of human trafficking have allegedly been abducted and gang-raped at gunpoint in India's eastern state of Jharkhand this week. After the incident was highlighted, the police on Thursday filed an FIR and Ranchi DIG Amol V Homkar formed three teams to investigate the matter.
The group, who worked for Christian organisation Asha Kiran, were raising awareness of human trafficking by performing a play in the village, Jharkhand State on Tuesday, before armed men on motorcycles threatened them. We are trying to identify the criminals.
Till March 2018, a total of 328 rape cases were registered.
The men and women were taken to a nearby forest where the women were raped and the men badly beaten.
The women, who were working for a non-governmental organization called Asha Kiran supported by a local Christian missionary group, were reportedly video-taped and warned not to go to the police.
Another police official told BBC Hindi the five women were now safe under police protection, awaiting the results of medical tests.
Police have also rounded up some supporters of Pathalgadi, an anti-establishment self-rule movement popular in several tribal villages.
Jharkhand has been in the spotlight in particular after three teenagers were raped and burnt alive in separate incidents last month.
The suspect's whereabouts are unknown, so authorities announced a reward of 50,000 rupees ($737) for whoever helps locate him.
"This is a problem in the area and the police are doing work to educate villagers about this".
The police officer told PTI that they received the information of the crime through sources as the victims did not inform the administration.
But the number of sex attacks has grown since then with some 39,000 rape cases reported nationally in 2016.
Meanwhile, the men accompanying the women have been thrased by the miscreants.
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