Worried Delhi rape victim alerted family to missing phone, ATM card

Last Updated: Mon, Dec 31, 2012 14:53 hrs

The Delhi rape victim who died on Saturday came from a humble family originally from Uttar Pradesh and gave tuitions to pay for her school and college fees.

Born into a family from Ballia, the young woman, family friends said, was hard working and desired to forge ahead in life.

The sources close to the family said they moved to the national capital a quarter century ago. It settled in a middle-class neighbourhood in southwest Delhi where she was born 23 years ago.

The girl's father, seeing her brilliance in academics, took loans to finance her higher studies.

After her education, she went to Dehradun to train as a physiotherapist. She returned to Delhi and started as an intern in a private hospital in north Delhi.

As she was the eldest in the family, her family was convinced that her success in academics would inspire her two younger brothers too.

"Like any family they dreamt of their daughter getting a better job and a better salary," a source said.

The dreams were shattered when she became victim to a gang-rape Dec 16, the beginning of a 13-day agonizing struggle for life that ended in her death in Singapore on Saturday.

She had been communicating, writing notes to her parents. "The culprits should be punished," she wrote in one note; in another, she enquired about her male friend who had tried to defend her and was beaten, a doctor at Safdarjung Hospital said.

Doctors had been admiring the young woman's fortitude and grit, despite the intense pain: "Being a medical student, she understands the treatment process and has been cooperating with the hospital staff. Her lower vagina has been badly damaged, but her upper vagina is not so affected. If she comes out of this crucial phase, she could lead a normal life," the doctor had said on the condition of anonymity.

The doctor also said that the young woman knew that her torture and gang-rape by six men in a moving bus had left the nation shocked, and that there has been a massive outpouring of grief and expressions of support.

"She is aware that MPs, students and women's rights activists have come out and expressed support for her and the whole nation is outraged," the doctor said.

The victim was serving as an intern at a private hospital in Delhi.

The victim even enquired about the accused when she met the male friend in the hospital.

The male friend, a software engineer, who was also badly assaulted by the accused when he tried to protect the victim from the attack, met the para-medical student at Safdurjung Hospital during which he told her that the accused have been arrested, the girl's brother had confirmed.

"The friend of my sister who was also there in the bus on that fateful Sunday came to visit her. This was the first time that both were meeting each other after the incident. He met for her for five minutes," the brother said that day.

He said his sister during the entire course of the treatment had enquired about the condition of her male friend and that if he was ok or not.

"When the male friend saw my sister, the first thing he said was that all the culprits have been arrested. And these words brought a pleasant look on my sister's face," the brother said.

The brother, who had met her sister three to four times after the incident, said that during her first meeting he had also said that all the culprits have been arrested and that they will be given the strictest punishment, which made her happy.

"The victim, who is currently having a tube inside her mouth, is communicating with the doctors and family member through gestures and writing on pieces of paper," he said.

One of the six accused, Akshay Thakur, the last to be arrested, was sent to judicial custody after police didn't ask for further extension of his custody.

Thakur had been taken into police custody for a day to recover clothes of the rape victim and her friend, her ring, their mobile phones and ATM cards.

The woman during her brief interactions with her family had enquired about the ATM card and mobile phone she lost that day.

Thakur was arrested on Dec 21 from Aurangabad in Bihar and underwent a Test Identification Parade (TIP) Dec 26, during which the victim's male friend identified him as one of the men involved in the incident.

The others arrested are Ram Singh, his brother Mukesh, Vinay Sharma and Pawan Gupta, who are in judicial custody till Jan 6.

A minor arrested in the case has been sent to a juvenile home.

After the death of the woman in Singapore early on Saturday, the accused have been also charged with murder.

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