International desk – At least 16 women were raped and assaulted sexually by police in Chhattisgarh in India, the National Human Rights Commission said.
Indian broadcaster NDTV reported that the right groups has served a notice to the state government and holding it “vicariously liable” for the incidents reported in 2015 and 2016.
The Commission, in a news release on Saturday, also said that it awaits the recorded statements of about “20 other victims”.
The human rights panel said it has directed its officials to record the statements of survivors whose statements were not recorded either by the NHRC team or by the Magistrate and submit it within a month.
The NHRC has also asked the government to explain why it should not recommend an “interim monetary relief” of Rs. 37 lakh to the women who were raped and assaulted.
“This includes, Rs. 3 lakh each to eight victims of rape, Rs. 2 lakh each to six victims of sexual assault and Rs. 50,000 each to two victims of physical assault,” the panel said.
The NHRC said it had launched an investigation after a report in The Indian Express newspaper in November 2015 said women from five villages in the Bijapur district of Chhattisgarh had alleged that state police personnel had sexually harassed and assaulted more than 40 of them and gang raped at least two.
It was also reported that belongings of many villagers were destroyed, stolen or scattered by the forces passing through the villages.
During the course of the probe, the Commission also received another complaint that alleged more incidents of sexual violence by the security personnel against women had taken place between 11 and 14 January, 2016 in two other villages.