Of the two men accused of committing the savage crime, the police said, one, Sumit, was a man who said he loved her, and wanted to marry her. But she didn't. The jilted lover had abducted her on Tuesday from the neighbouring district of Sonepat where she lived.
By the time they were done with her, the woman's father said, her condition was worse than Nirbhaya. It has been just a week since the Supreme Court sentenced four men to death for brutally gang-raping and murdering Nirbhaya in the national capital, just 70 kilometres from the spot where the 23-year-old was found in Rohtak's Industrial Model Township. It was a verdict that many had hoped would deter other rapists.
Forensic experts said she had been drugged at some point. Like Nirbhaya, her private parts were mutilated too. "Some foreign objects have been inserted... Substance found in the stomach suggests that she was made to drink something that sedated her," said SK Dhattarwal, head of the forensic department at Rohtak's medical college.
The victim's family says Sumit had been pressuring her for a year to marry him. But when she refused, he vowed to take revenge. "When we recovered her body she was so badly mutilated we couldn't recognise her... We want them to be hanged," demanded the woman's father. The police said the victim's head had been smashed to hide her identity.
Haryana Chief Minister ML Khattar called the crime "unfortunate". Congress president Sonia Gandhi said the "savage and bone chilling incident had shocked the conscience of the nation, reminding each one of us about the crying need of revisiting the important issue of women's safety and security."