On the afternoon of 5 August 2015, I waited outside the court of Vinod Yadav, the Additional Sessions Judge at the district court for north-west Delhi, in Rohini. The doors opened at around 1 pm, and out came a seven-year-old boy, with one hand held by his mother and a juice box in the other. He was about three-feet tall, and had a deep scar across his neck.
I was allowed to read the boy’s transcribed statement, according to which, on 3 June 2014, three men—identified as Ravinder Kumar, Dharmender, and a juvenile—abducted him from his house and took him to an abandoned building, where Kumar raped him. Then, they shoved a piece of brick up his anus, slit his throat with a blade, and dumped him in the septic tank outside the building before daylight. Prior to losing consciousness, the child managed to tie his shirt around his neck to try and stem the bleeding. Despite his condition, he survived until the police came looking for him later that night, with Kumar in custody.
Kumar, a 24-year-old from Badaun in Uttar Pradesh, was first arrested last June, along with the said accomplices for the abduction, rape, and attempted murder of this child in Jain Nagar. The accused were granted bail on 20 May this year. Less than two months later on, 16 July, Kumar was arrested from his house in Sukhbir Nagar for the alleged rape and murder of a six-year-old girl, also in Jain Nagar. Kumar’s family has since moved to the nearby Utsav Vihar.