A 16-year-old Dalit girl in Idukki’s Kattappana district allegedly attempted to take her own life days after the girl’s family filed a police complaint, stating that she was sexually assaulted by an auto driver in the region. Manu Manoj, who was also a member of the Democratic Youth Federation of India (DYFI), the youth wing of CPI(M), was arrested on Saturday. The accused was ousted from the youth wing after the issue had surfaced.
The girl is currently undergoing treatment in Thiruvananthapuram Medical College hospital. The family of the girl filed a complaint with the police, alleging that he had sexually assaulted the girl after reportedly falsely promising to be in a relationship with her. According to the police, the accused was absconding after the family filed the complaint.
“However, on Saturday morning, the girl tried to take her own life when she was in her house. She was immediately rushed to a local hospital and from there, she was taken to Thiruvananthapuram for further treatment,” said an official of Kattappana police station.
Officials of the DYFI in Idukki district confirmed to TNM that the accused had a membership in the party but was ousted after the issue surfaced. “He was not a local leader nor held any positions. He just had membership in DYFI and was ousted as soon as the issue about the case surfaced,” said the official.
On Saturday, Yuva Morcha, the youth wing of the BJP, in Kattappana had held a protest march against DYFI.
Kattappana police told TNM that the accused has been booked for rape, and under various sections of Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act and the Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe (Prevention of Atrocities) Act. The accused has been remanded into judicial custody.