7 arrested after girl, 15, alleges gang rape in India

Seven people have been arrested in India in connection with the alleged gang rape and public shaming of a 15-year-old girl in northeastern Bihar state.

The alleged victim, who cannot be named under Indian law, told authorities that she was attacked by six men on Aug. 14 while out walking in Gaya district, in the south of the state, according to Raviranjana Kumari, a police official investigating the case.

The alleged victim told police she considered herself to be in a relationship with one of the seven men arrested and had agreed to join him and his friends for a walk on the night of the alleged attack, said Kumari.

The following day, the girl’s mother complained to village seniors who are alleged to have accused her of fabricating the incident, said Kumari.

Villagers are then alleged to have shaved the girl’s head and paraded her around the village as a punishment for making “false accusations,” according to a statement provided by the alleged victim to police.

A total of seven people have been arrested in connection with the case.

“Out of the six accused of gang rape, three have been arrested. All four people allegedly involved in shaving her head have also been arrested,” said Kumari, who confirmed that the investigation was ongoing.

In 2018, India tightened its rape laws, introducing the death penalty in cases involving minors following a series of high profile attacks.

In June, an Indian court sentenced three men to life imprisonment for the abduction, rape and murder of an eight-year-old Muslim girl in the northern state of Jammu and Kashmir.

CNN’s Manveena Suri contributed reporting.