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Hathras gang rape | Autopsy shows strangulation, fracture

Policemen cremate the body of a 19-year-old Dalit gang rape victim in the early hours of September 30, 2020 in U.P.’s Hathras district.   | Photo Credit: PTI

The autopsy report of the Hathras gang rape victim confirms injury to the cervical spine (neck) produced by indirect blunt trauma, and its resultant sequelae.

Mentioning fracture in C 6 cervical vertebra, the report, signed by three doctors of the Safdarjung Hospital says the ligature mark over the neck is consistent with attempted strangulation but did not contribute to death.

Also read: Hathras gang rape | Victim cremated without consent, says family

The girl was brutally assaulted by four upper caste men on September 14 in Boolagarhi village of Hathras. After a struggle for life in Aligarh’s JN Medical College and Hospital, she passed away in Safdarjung Hospital on Tuesday morning.

The final diagnosis says “alleged post strangulation with cervical spine injury with sepsis and cardiopulmonary arrest.” The death summary notes “no vomiting and seizure”.

Viscera preserved

It says the viscera has been preserved along with pre-vaginal swab and smear and swab and smear from the right upper thigh. Nail clippings from both hands have also been preserved.

Later in the day, Prashant Kumar Additional Director General of Police (Law & Order) said the forensic report from the government lab in Agra had confirmed that the victim was not raped. He also cited the autopsy report to corroborate his point. “The lab report clearly says that no sperm was found in the sample.” However, he went on to add that the girl first mentioned about rape on September 22 and the samples were sent to the FSL on September 25.

Also read: Rahul, Priyanka detained while proceeding to Hathras

Dr. Haris Khan, medical superintendent, JNMCH, told The Hindu “the gynaecological and forensic examinations were conducted on September 22.”

Dr. Hamza Malik, president, JN Medical College Resident Doctors’ Association, said that if the samples were collected eight days after the incident there were little chances for spermatozoa to show up. “In such cases, sample collection is done within 72 to 90 hours of the incident and that too when the survivor had not passed urine, changed clothes or taken bath.”

Referring to the Criminal (Amendment) Law 2013, he reminded that the definition of rape had changed after the Nirbhaya case. “Penetration is not necessary to confirm sexual assault. Applying mouth or touching private parts were also classified as offenses of sexual assault. Having said that the forensic examination was conducted in JNMCH eight days after the assault. During this period, many injuries to the private parts could have healed,” he said.

Also read: Hathras gang rape case | U.P. orders SIT probe after family alleges girl was forcibly cremated

Video goes viral

Meanwhile, a video went viral, where the district magistrate of Hathras could be heard ‘telling the family members to adjust with the administration’. “Media wale to chale jayenge, hum hi aap ke saath khade hain [Media people would go, we are standing with you]” He further says, “Aapke byaan badalne ke chakkar main, kahin hum hi na badal jayen [in changing your statement, we might be shifted].

Family members also released videos, where they alleged the administration was putting pressure on them.

Prem Prakash Meena, Joint Magistrate, Hathras, said it was hurtful that the family was changing statements under the influence of some outsiders with vested interests. “A SIR [special investigation team] inquiry is on, and they should be a little patient,” he said.

Magistrates’s denial

Later, district magistrate Praveen Lakshar denied that he made any attempt to influence the family members and that his statements were being distorted.

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Printable version | Oct 26, 2021 1:20:52 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/autopsy-report-of-hathras-victim-confirms-injury-to-cervical-spine/article32741274.ece

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