The alleged rape and murder of a 20-year-old woman in Uttar Pradesh's Hathras will be investigated by the CBI, the Yogi Adityanath government said on Saturday evening.
The order to hand over the case to the Central Bureau of Investigation came on a day when Congress leaders Priyanka Gandhi Vadra and Rahul Gandhi visited the family of the victim in the village 200 km from Delhi.
"Chief Minister @myogiadityanath Ji has ordered the CBI to conduct a probe into the entire Hathras case," the UP Chief Minister's office tweeted.
Furious protests against the police and the government have been staged across the country, including one in national capital Delhi on Friday, where Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal made an appearance and demanded that the four accused be executed.
The ruling BJP, which is under pressure over its apparent inability to prevent horrific crimes against women - at least two more assaults and rapes have been reported from the state since the Hathras case - had earlier dismissed protests by the opposition as a "political stunt".
A large part of the criticism goes to the UP government's handling of the case, including its treatment of the young woman's traumatised family, whom they allegedly locked up in their home to hastily cremate their daughter at night.
Apart from Rahul Gandhi and Priyanka Gandhi, top officials from the UP government and police - DGP HC Awasthy and Additional Chief Secretary (Home) Awanish Awasthi - went to Hathras on Saturday to speak to the family.
Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath, whose resignation has been demanded by activists and the opposition, made a declaration of his government's commitment on Friday. "Those who even think of harming mothers and daughters in UP, their destruction is assured," he tweeted in Hindi.
The Allahabad High Court has taken notice of the case and has summoned top officials of the government and police to appear before it on October 12.