New Delhi Aug 25(ILNS): A 24-year-old woman, who had set herself on fire outside the Supreme Court last week over alleged harassment related to a rape complaint she had filed against an MP, along with her male friend, died of burn injuries on Tuesday.
She was undergoing treatment at RML Hospital after suffering 80% burns. The man had died of burns on Saturday, has 70% burns. The woman, a resident of east Uttar Pradesh, was on ventilator support after sustaining 80% burn injuries in the incident while her male friend had 70% burns on his body.
The woman, who had accused BSP MP Atul Rai from Ghosi of rape, had been battling for life over the past last 8 days but her condition deteriorated on Tuesday and she was declared dead around 11 am. Her body was handed over to her family and the last rites were performed at Nigam Bodh Ghat. The woman’s father had died many years ago and she has a brother, who studies in Class X. The man who died earlier was her senior in college and a former associate of MP Atul Rai.
On May 1, 2019, the police had said the woman had filed a rape case against Ghosi MP Atul Rai at the Lanka police station in Varanasi. On August 16, the man and the woman held a Facebook Live session from outside Gate D of the Supreme Court before pouring kerosene and setting themselves on fire.
In the video, the woman had accused at least five senior Uttar Pradesh police officers of harassing her to save the MP in the case she filed against him.
In her complaint, the woman alleged that Rai called her to his house to meet his wife on March 5, 2019, but she claimed he allegedly forced himself on her. She also accused the MP of recording the act and using it to blackmail and threaten her against approaching police. Last week, after reports of the couple’s self-immolation, the Uttar Pradesh Police had said that Rai was arrested and charge-sheeted on the woman’s complaint.
On August 17, the Uttar Pradesh government had formed a two-member DG rank officer’s Committee to probe FIRs of alleged rape survivors and their male associates.
The Delhi Police said they are in touch with the woman’s mother. When contacted, the woman’s mother did not comment on the incident. The investigation so far has revealed that the two deceased knew each other for the past 7-8 years and were active in politics from their student years.
Locals in the 27-year-old man’s village in Ghazipur, Uttar Pradesh, said that he was a witness in the case against Rai.
Earlier this year, the woman had approached the Supreme Court seeking a transfer of the case against Rai from Uttar Pradesh to a Delhi court./ILNS