A 41-year-old woman, who resisted an 18-year-old boy’s attempt to molest her, was injured seriously after the attacker allegedly struck her on the head with a boulder and tried to hold her head under water in the Vamanapuram river, near Venjaramoodu, early Monday.

According to the Venjaramoodu police, the woman was crossing a relatively dry stretch of the river at Melattukuzhi, about 12 km from Venjaramoodu around 7 a.m. on Monday, when the accused, identified as Anwar, 18, of Vamanapuram, attacked her. She resisted his attempt to molest her and in the scuffle, fell on the ground, following which he is said to have struck her on the head with a boulder. Even as she cried out for help, he tried to silence her by holding her head under the water, by which time a few local residents reached the spot, prompting him to flee.

The police said one of the persons who rescued her had stated that there were two other unidentified persons on the spot as well, but the woman, in her statement given to the police, said she saw only one person, Anwar, who has gone into hiding. The police have yet to ascertain whether Anwar was alone while they are also verifying reports that the woman was approached earlier too by the accused, attempting to harass her, and had reportedly been warned by her.

The woman, who was rushed to a private hospital near Venjaramoodu, was shifted to the Thiruvananthapuram Medical College Hospital around 4 p.m. According to MCH officials, she had head injuries, including a deep gash that required five stitches. By 8.30 p.m., she was shifted to a ward, where her condition was stated to be stable.

Earlier, supporters of the Bharatiya Janata Party took out a march to the Venjaramoodu police station, alleging that the police was delaying the arrest of the accused. Venjaramoodu Circle Inspector Vijayan said a police team was on the lookout for Anwar after the woman had named him.

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