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Rahul, Priyanka Gandhi and 3 Others Allowed to Visit Hathras to Meet Victim's Family: Noida Police

Congress leaders Rahul Gandhi and Priyanka Gandhi after they were stopped by police on a highway in Gautam Buddha Nagar, Uttar Pradesh on October 1, 2020. (AP Photo/Dinesh Joshi)

Congress leaders Rahul Gandhi and Priyanka Gandhi after they were stopped by police on a highway in Gautam Buddha Nagar, Uttar Pradesh on October 1, 2020. (AP Photo/Dinesh Joshi)

The Congress leaders are headed to Hathras in western UP to meet the family of a Dalit woman who died on Tuesday in a Delhi hospital, a fortnight after she was allegedly raped by four men outside her village.

Only five members of a delegation of MPs led by Congress leader Rahul Gandhi have been permitted to go to Hathras via Noida considering the restrictions imposed under CrPC Section 144, the Gautam Buddh Nagar Police said on Saturday. The Congress leaders are headed to Hathras in western UP to meet the family of a Dalit woman who died on Tuesday in a Delhi hospital, a fortnight after she was allegedly raped by four men outside her village.

"CrPC Section 144 has been imposed in Noida, Greater Noida as well as in Hathras and some other districts in Uttar Pradesh due to the COVID-19 outbreak. Considering the social distancing and other related norms, permission has been granted for five people, including Rahul Gandhi and Priyanka Gandhi Vadra," Police Commissioner Alok Singh told PTI.

On Thursday, Rahul Gandhi, Priyanka Gandhi along with several party leaders and workers were detained by the police and sent back to Delhi, after they tried to reach Hathras to meet the family of the Dalit woman. In a tweet in Hindi using the hashtag 'Hathrashorror', Rahul Gandhi said the behaviour of the UP government and police with the woman and her family "is unacceptable to me. No Indian should accept this." Rahul Gandhi asserted that "no power in the world can stop me from meeting this grieving family in Hathras and share their pain".

Hitting out at the Yogi Adityanath dispensation, Priyanka Gandhi said the UP government is "morally corrupt". "The victim did not get treatment, her complaint was not registered on time, her body was forcibly cremated, the family is in captivity, they are being suppressed -- now they are being threatened that they will have to undergo a narco test," she said in a tweet in Hindi.

"This behaviour is not acceptable to the country. Stop threatening the victim's family," she said. The party alleged that the woman and her family have been denied justice and "severely traumatised" by the BJP government in their attempt to hide the truth of the heinous crime perpetrated on her.

The Dalit woman was allegedly raped at a village in Hathras by four upper caste men on September 14. After her condition deteriorated, she was referred to the Delhi's Safdarjung Hospital where she breathed her last on Tuesday. She was cremated in the early hours of Wednesday, with her family alleging the local police forced them to conduct the last rites in the dead of the night.

Local police officers, however, had said the cremation was carried out "as per the wishes of the family".


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