A woman in her early 20s was found bleeding by a canal in Uttar Pradesh last evening, her face and throat slashed with a sharp weapon. Shockingly, instead of rushing her to hospital, locals filmed her on their mobile phones and even "interviewed" her as they waited for the police to arrive at the spot in Meerut in western UP.
She was taken finally to a hospital by the police and is said to be stable.
Two men, including the woman's brother, have been arrested based on her statement before a magistrate. The other man was a relative, the Meerut police have said.
The woman alleged that she was attacked because her family was fiercely against her marrying someone she had been in a relationship with.
The incident coincided with the Uttar Pradesh government's move to set up a new "Woman and Child Security Organization", a response to a series of heinous crimes against women reported from different parts of the state just this month. In a press release, the government said the unit would be headed by a police officer of the rank of additional Director General of Police - the second senior most police rank.
As details emerged of the incident in Meerut, the UP police put out an appeal urging people to take a victim of assault to a hospital immediately instead of filming videos. "The time between someone getting injured and that person being taken to hospital is called 'golden hour'. It's a crucial time. The Supreme Court has ruled that anyone who takes such a person to hospital will not be questioned. So I appeal to everyone, instead of making videos please take such a person to hospital - please do not wait for the police to arrive," said senior police officer Avinash Pandey.
UP has been in the glare over rising incidents of crime against women. A teenage girl was allegedly raped by two men and her body singed with cigarette butts in Gorakhpur district on Friday. On Saturday, a 13-year-old girl was raped and killed in Lakhimpur Kheri district. Her body was found in a sugarcane field. Two men from her village have been arrested.