On April 14th, on the evening of the Cheiraoba festival in Manipur, a group of youngsters went to witness the traditional thabal chongba festivities in Imphal. On the way, they were waylaid by a gang of boys, and two of the minor girls were brutally gangraped.
Initial reports indicated that the seven accused were all 18 or above. Initially, six were remanded to police custody while one was sent to a juvenile home. Now, six of the seven have submitted that they are juveniles, and have been remanded to juvenile homes, leaving only one of the seven accused being tried as an adult.
When the only adult accused in the gang rape was produced before the Sessions judge of Imphal East on the 25th of April, he was mobbed by women activists outside the court. Women shouted slogans as he entered the court complex, while others tried to attack him water bottles. He has been remanded to four days in police custody.
Women across the state have been holding gatherings and meetings to ensure that justice will be done in this case. Imphal Free Press also reports that women activists have said that the accused should provide scientific proof of their age, as documentation that they’re juveniles could be availed easily from anywhere. They suggest that bone tissue sampling should be conducted on the accused to prove that they are juveniles.
Another mass rally protesting the gangrape is to be held on the 27th of April.