A nine-year-old girl was allegedly raped and murdered in Odisha's Kandhamal district, the police said today.
The incident took place when the girl, a Class 4 student, had gone for a bath to a nearby nullah after returning home from school on Saturday, additional superintendent of police U R Das said.
When the girl did not return home for a long time, her father lodged a complaint with the area police station. In the evening, villagers spotted her body lying half naked near a bush with blood and injury marks, the police said.
With the family members of the girl and villagers alleging that she was raped and murdered, the body was sent for autopsy and scientific investigation was on, they said.
Sub-divisional police officer (SDPO) of Balliguda Nitin Kusalkar, said a man identified as Gagan Pradhan, aged around 30, has been arrested in connection with the crime.
In the aftermath of the incident, tension prevailed in the area with angry people resorting to road blockade demanding immediate arrest of the culprit and adequate compensation to the bereaved family.
They also demanded steps to shut down all liquor shops in the area saying liquor was the main cause of such crimes. The protesters who had staged road blockade till late Saturday night also held a sit-in on Sunday.