The death of a 20-year-old woman who was dragged by a car for nearly an hour after colliding with a scooter she was riding on has sparked outrage in India and calls for justice.
The woman was on the scooter on her way home from work in the early hours of New Year’s Day when the car hit her.
News reports said the car’s driver and four passengers, all male, did not stop after the collision, but rather dragged its body for miles through streets outside the capital, Delhi.
The accident shocked India and made headlines in a country where road fatalities are among the highest in the world.
About 150,000 people are killed on the roads every year in India, according to the British Guardian.
Delhi Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia described the incident as an example of “extreme cruelty”.
He said, “Even if I get stuck [قطعة] of polythene or a piece of paper in the car, the driver finds out. Stop the car and check it out. This incident is an example of extreme cruelty (..) To think that the occupants of the car did not realize that a woman was stuck underneath is nothing but cruelty and ignorance,” according to the “Indian Express”.
Sisodia explained that the woman was the sole breadwinner for her family, and her mother was ill, and promised to support the family.
An autopsy revealed that “trauma, post-injury haemorrhage to the head, spine, left femur and lower extremities” was the initial cause of death, finding 40 external injuries on the victim’s body.
The matter did not stop there, but the victim’s family said that she had been sexually assaulted, saying that “her body was naked” when it was found, but the police said that the autopsy did not reveal traces of sexual assault.
The occupants of the car claimed that they did not realize that the woman’s body was stuck under their car, saying that the car windows were closed while they were listening to loud music.
The British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) reported that he was charged with premeditated murder and causing death by negligence.