RAPE: The Hated Weapon of The Indian Armed Forces

(A report on some rape cases of Assam)

Manab Adhikar Sangram Samiti (MASS)

The human rights movement is a consequence of the struggle by the human race to accelerate its slow onward journey towards a just society for all. Its genesis can be traced to the earliest days of human civilization when institutionalized social and political orders were founded. As a result of the successes achieved by the human rights movement over many centuries, the basic rights that a human should possess by virtue of being born a human, stand reaffirmed through various international declarations and instruments.

The Preamble to the United Nations Charter reaffirms the faith in fundamental human rights, in the dignity and worth of the human person, in equal rights of men and women and of nations large and small. Similarly, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights pledges in its preamble as well as in its various articles certain basic and inalienable rights that people are endowed with by virtue of simply being human.

The same is true of other international instruments like the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights as well as the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women amongst others. Some of these instruments provide for the right against exploitation. That every woman should have the right against exploitation of her body or person finds express recognition in the form of commitments under Article 4 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, Principle 9 of the Declaration of the Rights of the Child, Articles 7 and 8 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, and Articles 8 of the Declaration of the Elimination of Discrimination against Women, as well as the supplementary covenant on the Abolition of Slavery, the Slave Trade and institutions and practices similar to Slavery. The 1974 Declaration goes to the extent of extending protection to women and children even during emergencies and armed conflicts.

However, in spite of India being a signatory party to most of these instruments and its profound claims to redressing the varied violations of women's rights, the stark reality of conditions of women in Assam is shocking. Instances of rape, torture, custodial violence and varied other forms of discrimination have become commonplace in the state of Assam. Rape is being carried out by personnel of the armed forces and security enforcement agencies of India operating in the State under the so-called Unified Command Structure. The perpetrators are immune to prosecution under the judicial system on the plea that they are only subject to court martial proceedings. Such court martial proceedings, when held in extremely rare cases, are more a mockery than justice. In addition, the public is not informed of or allowed to attend the court martials leading to a lack of transparency in the government and its army. In most cases, it remains unclear whether the court martial actually took place or whether the perpetrator punished for the crimes.

Instances of rape have continued unabated ever since women were first raped by CRPF (Central Reserve Police Force) men in North Kamrup in 1983 when the state was under President's rule. MASS has been investigating, documenting and bringing to focus the incidents of rape and other crimes against women since 1991. Presented below are some of the incidents of rape, gang-rape and killing of victims after the crime has been commited.

(i) In an incident on October 16, 1991, at No. 2 Khowdang village near Naoboisha area in Lakhimpur District, one 14 year old girl named Miss Bhanimai Dutta was gang-raped and killed by personnel of the Indian Army. On that day, a group of Army personnel suddenly cordoned off the residence of Mr. Mukuta Dutta, father of Miss Bhanimai, and picked up his son Mr. Babul Dutta and carried him to their vehicle while beating him mercilessly. When Mr. Mukuta Dutta and his wife rushed to the gate of their compound to bar the Army personnel from taking Babul away, three Army personnel entered the house and raped 14 year old Miss Bhanimai. When Mr. Mukuta and his wife returned from the Army vehicle where Mr. Babul was being detained, they saw the Army personnel leave their house in a hurry. On entering the house, they discovered the nude body of Miss Bhanimai on the bed wet with blood. She died after soon thereafter. The Army men blocked the post mortem of Miss Bhanimai Dutta for up to three days. They forced the doctor who performed post-mortem to sign on a blank piece of paper before the procedure. After three days, the rape could be hinted at only by counting the marks, seen on her left check and other private parts of the body.

(ii) Another such incident of rape and killing was took place on the early part of the same month, i.e. on October 6, 1991 at a village near Gohpur in Sonitpur District. On that day, around 1 1.30 A.M., a group of army in plain clothes were moving around the house of Mr. Anil Barua of Sutargaon under Hawajan Police Station of Sonitpur District, as some of Arms were recovered from his house. Seven Army personnel entered the nearby house of Mr. Moniram Barua. At that time the wife of Mr. Moniram was cooking and none of the male members of the family except Miss Raju Barua, a 20 years old College student, was at home. The group of 7 Army dragged her to a nearby jungle at gun point and raped her one after another, After repeatedly raped her, Army threw her senseless body lives nearby, came to the spot and pulled her out from the pond and taken to Dholpur Ro-spital, where she was declared dead. When she was disrobed, a male under garment was found inside the frock of eavy marks Miss Raju Barua. The Post mortem report revealed that h of biting on the nipples and bruise marks between her breast. Heavy male sperm inside the vagina and considerable mud in the stokach was found. She was found to be a virgin till the alleged rape by several Army personnel.

(iii) In a recent case, on July 17 of 1998, another woman was killed after rape. At around 7 P.M. of 17th July. 1998 two BSF (Border Security Force) personnel stationed at Thamana entered forcefully the residence of Mr. Buddha Das of Thamana under Borbari Police Station in Nalbari District. Mr. Das who is a veg- etable seller'was not in the house at that time. The two personnel caught hold of Mr. Buddha's wife Mrs. Bina (20 years old and mother of two children) on the bed while she was trying to lull her child. The Security personnel threw away the child from her laps and bar- barously raped her one after another in front of her child. After rap- ing Mrs. Bina, she was stabbed with a Moida (A traditional knife used for dressing of fish and cutting of vegetables) by the two secu- rity personnel. The two personnel left Mrs. Bina with wounds in the entire body. The neighbouring people approached after hearing her outcry in a lying conditio@ wet with blood on the floor. After few minutes her husband reached there returning from the market. Mrs. Bina lying at that critical condition somehow could tell the heinous story of her fate to all of them present there. After sometime she died in extreme pain out of the terrible injuries. Mr. Buddha Das, husband of Mrs. Bina Das lodged a complaint at the Dumuni Police out post under Barbari Police Station .(case no- 92198). The Police instead of booking the culprits, picked up some of Mr. Budha's fam- ily and relatives and tortured in the Police Station. The case ofbar- h,qrous rade and killing created great resentment among all sections

(iv) On J@inuary 11, 1997 reactiiig tif) to @n anibusli on a CR ['I, party personnel from the force cordoned off' Aiiilaiguri villa("C in Kokrajhar district in a combing operation in search of militants. During the operation conducted around 9 RM.. CRPF personnel tortured the villagers and raped Mrs. Urbashi Rava, Mrs. Basavi Rava, Mrs, Suni Rava and Mrs. Damshri Rava in their houses in the absence of male members. After the incidents of rape the victims were threatened not to disclose the incidents. Local people and various organizations demanded punishments to the culprits but no action was taken by the administration.

(v) Mrs. Tulumoni Devi (23), W/o Mr. Harkanta Nath of Kopahera Ghumatigaon under (Mikirbheta Police station) of Marigaon district was raped on the evening of April 24, 1997, by a (Yroup a Army stationed at Barapujia Army camp. While cordoning off Kopahera Ghumatigaon residence of Mr. Bhabananda Choudhury and detained him to question about his brother, Mr. Bul Choudhury an ULFA activist. There after they entered several houses in search of the ULFA activists. Around that time 8 armymen entered the house of Mr. Harakanta Nath, an employee with a private concern and taking advantage of his absence raped. Mrs. Tulumoni in presence of her two year old child. Mrs. Tulumoni lost her sense and hearing the cries of her child neighbours rushed to her house to find out I incident. Her husband along with the villagers, on his return from work., admitted her to the district civil hospital and filed a case at the Mikirbheta police station. On hearing of the development, armymen rushed back and threatened the villagers. On 27th April women from 40 local villages brought out a rally and submitted a memorandum to the Deputy Commissioner, Marigaon demanding a judicial enquiry. Several democratic organizations including Anchalik Mohila Sa,jagata. Samiti (a women organization) AASU, AJYCP, KSU. TSF and others demanded punishment to the guilty, but in vain under Jonai police station of Dhemaii district was raped on the evening of 10th May 1997 by a group of Indian army personnel operating in that area. The army personnel entered her house in search of ULFA activists in the absence of any male member at the residence she was raped repeatedly by the army personnel and left threatening, her not to publish the incident.
After the incident Mr. Jatin Pegu filed a case at the Jonai police station. (case no 31197) and Mrs. Tarulata Pegu was examined at the hospital. Although one Mr. Seo Sankar Jadav was named in the complaint, neither the police nor the civil administration took any steps in the matter. Demands for ajudicial enquiry by the local public and several organizations too did not evoke any response from the administration.

(vii) On the evening of 21st May 1997 at about 7.30 PM., a group of army personnel from the 16 Rajput Regiment operating in Tamulpur police station area under Nalbari district cordoned off the house of Mr. Laven Basumatary in Ambari Sarubhera village. Near by residents heared gunshots in which the army claimed to lost one of their men as per report with Tamulpur police station. There up after about two hours armymen cordoned of the area for three days in "Ych of militants. After torturing the villagers that very night some armymen dragged Miss. Santhali Bodo (17) and Miss Rangecla (15) to the building under construction for housing the village library and raped them in front of the villagers. The next day they entered the house of Mr. Dayaram Rava and raped Ms. Runumi (16) a student of class nine and Ms. Thingigi (17) a class ten student. This was followed by a rape on Miss Samashri (13), Miss Janthari (14) and Miss Ambe (13) in their respective residences. Although a case bearing Tamulpur police station case No. 95/ 97 was registered but no investigation was carried out. Demand for a judicial enquiry and punishment to the cuilty though demanded by Iiiiiiian riahts organizations and other democratic

(viii) On 23rd May, 1997 retaliating to an ambush by 1) [,FA on a truck carrying CRPF personnel, wherein two CRPF personnel were killed, a large number of Indian army and CRPF personnel raided the area under village Kasidoba in s'e@arch@'bf:ULFA militants. Apart from torturing the villagers a group of army men Cantered the house of Mrs.. Minoti Bala Rai (22) and pushing away' het@ol ne@ year old child, raped her in the absence of any male numbe@.@Ainly tried to molest other womenfolk of the village too. While most manage to escape Miss Dura Rai (1 8) was caught on her way and was taken to a nearby jungle and raped barbarously and she became unconscious. Policemen of Bangaigaon Police Station and District Administration of Bangaigaon refused to register any case and therefore families of .the two victims had to return home. The local people and various democratic organizations including MASS, submitted memorandum to the district administration demanding judicial enquiry and punishment to the culprits, but no action was taken.

(ix) Miss Dura Ray (18) and Miss Minati Ray (22) of village Kachiderba, Chipanchila under Bongaigaon police station, district Bongaigaon were raped on the night of May 23, 1997 by army personnel operating in the area in search of ULFA activists, who had earlier during the day attacked a platoon of CRPF personnel in the village. In thei name of the combing operation armymen raped the two girls at their residences. Although a case was registered with the Bongaigaon police station, no action was taken.

(x) On 18th May, 1992, 6 armymen of 6. Kumaon regiment were killed in an attack by NDFB militants, near Satgiri, Khairahari village under Tangla police station of Darrang district. While conducting a raid on the village at about 9 am. Armymen entered the house of Miss Nilima Boro (16) who was then cleaning her house materials. Two annymen entered her house and tried to molest her and when confronted by her mother beat her and tried to rape Nil i ma. She somehow managed to run away to the paddy field but armymcii caurht her at the r)addy field and rar)ed her. After about an hour villagers rescued -the paddy field in an unconscious state. The same day Miss Fouduro Boro (14) of the very same village was also raped by the armymen of the same regiment at her residence. Both the girls were take to hospital in a very critical condition. The villagers and several other organizations submitted memorandum to tlite district administration demanding judicial enquiry and compensation put without any result.

(xi) Miss Marnoni Koch (12) daughter of Mr. Umesh Koch of village Komarchuburi, under Dhekiajuli Police station of Sonitpur district was raped at her village on the 25th May, 1,997 by the armed personnel belonging to 25 Punjab regiment stationed at Dhekiajuli Industrial Centre. While raiding the village in search of ULFA activists they forced the villagers together in the middle of the village. But two artnymen forcefully detained Miss Mamoni's mother, but she managed to escape and thereupon one army personnel picked up Miss Mamoni to her kitchen and raped her. When her sick grand mother tried to protect Mamoni, one armed personnel kicked her with his boot. After raping her, the jawan threw a ten rupee note at her. Mr. Umesh K. och, father of the victim on being informed made a complaint to the officer-in-charge of the operation. The Army officer summoned his group and the culprit was identified by Mamoni in his presence and in the presence of the villagers. A report was also filed at the Dhekiajuli police station. Wherein Miss Mamoni's statement was recorded and later the F. S.L. report was examined by the Chief Judicial Magistrate in G.R. case No. 997197. Large sca., protests by 'various organizations including strikes and black out. demanding punishment to the culprit and condemning the incident took place and a memorandum was placed before the district administration. In this instance the army Brigadier, the Deputy Commissioner and the Superintendent of Police visited Ms. Mamoni's house to enquire of the incident. Langhin Goraimari village under Howraghat Police Station, Karbi Anglong district was raped by a CRPF personnel at her residence at about 1 1 PM. on 30th July, 1997. The culprit in a drunken stage entered the residences of Mr. Paramananda Basumatary, Mr. Makhan Basumatary and Mr. Sunirain Narzary in the search of militants before entering the house of Mr. Rarnakanta Sargiary. He injured Mr. Ramakanta on his head and chest by his gun and Mr.. Ramakanta fell unconscious Taking advantage of the situation, he thereupon raped Mrs. Jarnuna Sargiary. The police however refused to register a complaint by the victim and her husband the following day stating that it was then too late to register the same.

(xiii) Mrs. Rupahi Basumatari (45) wife of Mr. Abinash Basumatary of Howraghat village under Howraghat Police Station 01 Karbi Arig'iong district was raped by an army jawan around 1 P.M. on Ist August 1997. While a truck (No As 01 2677) carrying armymen stopped at Howraghat Tinali to change a tyre the jawan entered the house of Mr. Abinash and threatening him with his gun raped Mrs. Rupohi who was in the house. They were too scared to report the matter since they were threatened not to publish the incident and to report the same to the police.

(xiv) Miss Dulumaya Tamang (12) and Miss Sandimaya Tamang (12) both daughters of Mr. Jit BahadurTamang of Jay,rwnpur Saygharia, village under Bordoloni Police Station of Dhemaji district were raped by two police personnel at midnight on 4th August at their home. The two policemen in civil dress while on patrol duty entered the residence of Mr. Jit Bahadur Tamang. At that time, Ms. Dulumaya was in sleep. The policemen forcibly picked up her to a nearly bamboo bush and raped her for two hours. She somehow managed to come back and inform her mother. Her mother Mrs. Kalitnaya Tamang along with some villagers submitted a written complain to the Bordoloni police out post but the officer not only refused to register the complain but also did not take any steps for victim. On the contrary a group of policemen c@nip- to the house of Mrs. Kalimaya Tamang on the 28th August and bleat her husband for' daring to prefer the complaint and took away' Miss: Sandidiaya Tamang@ and raped her from midnight to 3 A.M .After the incident@Mr. Jit Bahadur Tamang is still untraced andnoactio-n. asydt@beentakenbythedistrictadministration.The memorandum submitted by the local public has not been attended to as 22nd August 1997 Miss. Lima Marak village under Rangapara police station of Sonitpur di@ apddby the Indian army personnel operating in the area A lar2e number of army personnel raided the village in search of acti@i@iZ@of banned organization ULFA and NDFB at midnight. tortured the villagers and molested women. Thereafter the entered the residence of Miss Lima and raped her threatening her not to discl.,,-,p_ the incident. Next day the family along with some villagers went to Rangapara police station to lodge a case. But the police as well as the district administration refused to take any steps on the plea that it was to late. NASS a women's organization demanded a judicial enquiry.(xvi) On 29th Sept. 1997 around 3.30 A.M. personnel of 13 field Regiment Commandos raped Mrs. Kalpana Das Kakoti (18) wife of Mr. Arun Das a v illage Patasali Bangaon Chariduwar under Rangapara police station of Sonitpur district. That very day a group of 13 field Regiment of the Indian army while cordoning the village in search of ULFA militants raided the house of Mr. Punya Das, father of Mr. Arun Das. The army perso nnel compelled Mr. Punya Das and his sons Mr. Arun to kneel down at their courtyard. 6 to 7 army personnel forcibly took Mrs. Kalpana Das Kakoti to the backvard of the house and raped her repeatedly. She lost her sense and, her cloths were full of blood due to continuous rape. After raping her army picked' up@'Mr. Arun and one of his friend and handed them to the police only on the' Ist October, 1997.

The family members took Mrs. Kalpana and Kakoti lodged a complaint with the Rangapara police station with the help of local women organization (case No 189197, 11/s 366 (A)/ @76 IPC) and admitted the victim at the Kanaklata Civil Hospital, Tezpur. Her medical report conformed the rape on her by 6/7 persons and Mr. Rohini Deka stated that he had to make seven stitched to stop her bleeding. On 3rd October, 1997 Mrs. Kalpana was produced before the Chief Judicial Magistrate who ordered recording of her statement under section 164 of the Cr.P.C. Statements were also recorded of the villages headman, Mr. Rajani Das, Mr. Soneswar Das the uncle of Mr. Arun Das, Mr. Cheniram Saikia, Mr. Benudhar Das, Mr. Bhogeswar Ko-ch, Mrs. Domoyanti Kakoti, Ms. Moni Das, Ms. Minoti Das and Ms. Niru Bora. But the next day police mysteriously sent Mrs. Kalpana to her father's house at Nahorkotia warning him not to send her back. Inspite of the evidence in order to protect the culprits the police alleged that Mr. Arun Das and his friends raped Mrs. Kalpana and not the army. The matter is under subjudice. (xvii) Mrs. Tukheswari Rava (37) wife of Mr. Putu Rava of Ravapara, Mulagaon village under Bongaigaon police station of Bongaigaon was raped by personnel of the 109 Border security force. On the afternoon of 14th January, 1998 on the day of the National festival'Bihu'two security personnel of the above force namely Mr. Prafulla Kalita and Mr. Promod Hazarika after entering the house of Mr. Putu Rava beat him and chased him away. Thereafter they locked his uncle Mr. Satish Rava in a room and pulled. Mrs. Tukheswari Rava, a mother of seven children down on her bedroom and raped her in front of her children. Hearing her cries for help neighbours rushed in and apprehended the accused red-handed. This forced Bangaigaon police station to register a case (No 6198) and the district administration has ordered a magisterial enquiry to proceed with the enquiry appointing Mrs. Mahila Buragohain and Mrs. Chandra Devi jointly.

(xviii) On 1 Oth March, 1998 Mrs. Dimota Doimary (22) at Police Station of Darrani, district fell a victim of rape in the hands of No. 2 Madras Regiment. The previous (lay army picked up Mr. Gobinda Doimary and after torturing him in theii. interrogation camp at Rowta brought him to his houseat 2 No. Bliiltikniari. They ac,ain entered his house in search operation. After dragging out the family members to the courtyard some armymen pulled in Mrs. Dimola Doimary, the newly married wife of Mr. Nazursh Doimai-y the younger brother of Mr. Gobinda Doimary into the house at gun point and raped her at about 2-30 AM, after switching off the lights. Although,a complain was registered by Udalguri police (case No. 46/98,Uls 326 IPC) and her statement recorded by the Magistrate she was sent for medical examination only on 18th March, 1998 seven days after the incident.(xix) Anjali Basumatary (22) daughter of Mr. Bobot,a Basumatary of village No. 2 Bhalukmari under Udal-uri police station too was raped by men of the No. 2 Madras Regiment of the Indian army on 10th March, 1998, while conducting a search on the village army raided the house of Mr. Bobora Basuinatary at 3.30 A. M., and pulled out the family members to the courtyard, includin C' Miss Rita, Miss Lunshri and Miss Anjali. Two Army personnel molested Miss Rita and Miss Lunshri in the dark courtyard while three others pulled Miss Anjali to the kitchen and forcefully laid her on the ground and one of them raped her.

(xx) On l lth March, 1998 as a equal to the incident of army raid on NDFB hide outs following killing of two armymen by NDFB militants who escaped from army custody, a group of army iiien belonging to No. 2 Madras Regiment stationed of Rowta cordoned Sonari Khawang Gaon under Udalguri police station of Darran" district in search of NDFB militants. Around 10 of them raided the house of Mr. Basanta Doimary. They took Mrs. Kliandi Doimary (25) inside the house to open the boxes and thereupon three triilynicii began to rape her. Then the members of'tlie army entered the house oi' 14i-.,z Aiiil,,i Khqkhlii-v (27) iii(t Rini Kiiiklil,,irv (24) tiid bers to@@he courtyards raped them at after pulling out the other mem their pathetic woes to the dead of night. The victims revealed s widely published, MASS probe team journalists and the incident wa also visited the area and recorded the statement of the victims.

(xxi) Men of the No. 2 Madras Regiment of the army stationed at Rowta under Udaiguri police station under Darrang district again committed rape an 14th March, 1998 victimising Mrs. Monaishry Doimary (28) wife of Mr. Abang Doimary of No. 2. Bhalukmari forest village. At about 1 1 PM on that fateful night a group of armymen went to the village in search of NDFB militants. Some of them entered the house of Mr. Abang Doimary and pulled him out breaking open the bamboo door. Thereafter, a few armymen questioned Mrs. Monaishri Doimary about militants. When she expressed ignorance she was molested and on her offering resistance, the official got angry and ordered his men to rape her. In front of the officer three army personnel raped her and left the place. Two locks of the culprits shirt left behind were handed over to the Police during the course of investigation. Although the family members of the victims submitted a memorandum to the district magistrate on 12th March, 1998, nothing is known on the progress of the investigations.

(xxii) Mrs. Nibari Doimary (32) wife of Mr. Lathirani Doimary of Hatkhula village under Udalguri Police Station of Darrang district. was raped by the army personnel of No. 2 Madras Regiment stationed at Rowta at 9 P.M. on 14th March, 1998. Army personnel used to come to the house of Mr. Kathiram Doimary for country liquor . Every tinic they have had odd signals to Mrs. Nibary Doimary. On the night of 14th March, Mr. Kathirain refused to open the door, which was then broken upon. Mr. Kathiram was pulled out and sought information about NDFB militants. At these time Nibary was pushed inside and asked to undress, and on her refused was tied to her bed and raped by a jawan. After the incident neighbours came to her house and lodged a complaint with the Udalguri Police Station on 18th March, she was sent for medical examination.

(xxiii) In a recent case, in retaliation of a Bomb blast at ---_Balikuchi village nearing Paikarkuchi, on the night of July 15, 98 by ULFA activists, a big group of 313 Field Regiment of Indian Army entered the Paikarkuchi village under Nalbari Police Station in Nalbari district at 9 PM. on July 16, 1998 in search of ULFA activ- ists. The group went to the residence of Mr. Dharani Baishya, a school teacher, of the village and knocked at the door. The family members were enjoying television programmes -then. Mr. Dharani hearing the sudden knock opened the door. Some of the group pulled him out with force and beat him severely along with his small chil- dren while two of the group inside the house caught hold of Dharani's 40 years old wife Lilawati Baishya. They undressed her quite forc- ibly and fell her down on the floor. Then they tortured her brutally. One of them sat upon her and bit several parts of her naked body. Then the two armymen raped the lady one after another and left the house. The armymen threatened her at the time of departure not to lodge any complaint anywhere concerned against the gang rape.

(xxiv) On the same night, another group of 313 Field Regi- ment of Indian Army went to the house of Mr. Hemanta Baishya of the village. Four arrnymen of the group trespassed the house. Mr. Hemanta taishya was a,@sent ia his house at that time. The arinymen first pulled Mr. Hemanta's old father out and caught hold of his wife Mrs. Bina Baishya (24). She was inside the house with her 7 months ol d baby in her lap. The armymen forcefully took the baby and threw it to the bed. Then they forced her to undress. Ms. Bina protested their barbarous proposal but in vain. They began to undress her them- selves and raped her one after another. Each time two of them were ,c,uardin. the door and allowed nobody tar enter the house. After the crime, the armymen threatened the family, and the victim in particular, not to lodge any complaint. The same group of 313 Field Re,3iment is suspected to have committed as many as 10 rapes in the threatening of killing provided that the disclosure is made or public complaints are lodged accusing those armymen. The cases documented below are enough to prove that since the deployment of Indian Army in Assam on 28 November of 1990, they intentionally and very systematically raped the womenfolk in an incessant manner

(xxv) On 22nd October, 1991 Undibala Roy, a housewife of 28 years of age was raped at her own house. At about 12 noon, while her husband Mr. Bhagyaram Roy of Lubdungguri under Bijni Police Station in Bongaigaon District, was away, two Army entered her house and raped her. After the crime the Army escaped leaving her unconscious. When her husband returned, he found her lying unconscious on the floor. There are quite a few eyewitness who have seen the two army entering the house and leaving. A case was registered in Bijni Police Station (Case No. 89191- uls 376) but till now no action has been taken.

(xxvi) On 12th October of 1991 at 1 1 A.M. two army per- sonnel from Nityananda camp came to the village Monipur under Pattacharkuchi Police Station in Barpeta District, in plain clothes and conducted a house to house search. When they entered Dwijumani's house, they found her alone at home. The personnel raped Ms. Dwijumoni Nath, who is a leprosy patient from a very poor family. Though complaints have been lodged with the SDO by the family members and also by the local legislator, Government has turned a blind eye and did not arrange for medical examination.

(xxvii) On 20.10.91 at 12 Midnight two Indian Army in uniform broke into the house of Ms. Numali Bania, widow of Late Ghuran Bania of Jalukota Mermukh under Bihpuria Police Station in Lakhimpur District. One of them raped her at gunpoint while the other stood guard and then they both left after threatening her not to report it to anyone. Next morning, this middle aged widow and mother of three daughters went herself to Dhalpur Govt. Hospital to get medical aid and to obtain a certificate. The doctor asked her to re- nort to thf., local Police .;tation first. She was ciuite frightened by them and could not muster up enough courage to go to the Police. However, she went to the civil SDC Mr. R. K. Pegu and lodged a complaint with him. But she got no help from the civil authorities in lodging her case with Police or any subsequent help.

(xxvii) Mrs. Labanya Barua, wife of Mn Jogen Barua of Phanibari Dhuliapathar under Bihpuria Police Station in Lakhimpur District and mother of 2 daughters was raped by Indian @xmy-per- sonnel on 18.9.91 at 6 RM. That day 3 armymen came to her house. Two of them were in civil dress and one, whom she describes as an officer, was in uniform. She was raped by that officer at gunpoint while the others stood guard. They left that day after threatening her not to report it to anyone. Next day she went to the Dholpur Govern- ment health centre for treatment, but the doctor asked her to report it to the Police. Next day (20.9.91) she went to BihpuiCia RS. but the Police said that it was already quite late and- they refused to register the case. Then she went to the SDC and lodged her complaint. The SDC assured her of help and asked her to stay at home. But nothing was done by the Civil administration. When the DC was told about it he said that the SDC did not report the incident. On 24.9.91, the same armymen again came to her house and the same man again raped hen She again went the Police but again they refused to regis- ter the case saying that they have no tim. She then again complained to the SDC, but this time also nothing was done. She is still waiting for justice.

(xxviii) On the night of 17 April' 199 1, around 1. 30. P.M. a group of Army raided some houses of the village Jhargaon under Khair@bari Police Station in Darran. District in search of ULFA activists. During this raids, Army personnel raped two women, Mrs. Moneswari Deka (38) and Ms. Janaki Saikia (30), in two separate incidents, at their respective houses.@

(xxix) On 26 October'96, a large group of Indian Army cor- doned the village Bamkolakhowa under Khowang Police Station in activists. The main party entered the village, while their six vehicle were left at a place near to the residence of Mr. Badan Dihingia and guarded by few Army personnel. The Assam Police Constable Mr. Wahid Ali and an Army person went to the residence of Mr. Badan Dihingia and knocked his door. When the door was opened Mn B adan Dihingia was dragged out from his house and on pretext of search operation, the Army entered the house. Mrs. Kumoli Dihingia, wife of Mr. Badan and the sister in law Miss Nobanita Dihingia were told to go into their own rooms. The Armyman first entered into the room of Mrs. Kumoli Dihingia and asked her to open almirah and started fondling her. She resisted and called the local Police con- stable Mn Wahid Ali not to let the Armyman inside and asked him to do searching instead. The Armyman left the room and then the Po- lice constable immediately grabbed and forcibly raped her in front of her 8 years old daughter. The Armyman entered next and he also raped her. After the incident, both entered into the room of Miss Nabanita and molested her. After leaving the house of Mr. Badan Dihingia, both entered the next house and molested Mrs. Jaimaty Chetia, an eight months pregnant woman. Mrs. Kumoli Dihingia with the help of local women and other democratic organisation, filed a case at the local Police Station (case no 85/96, under section 448/376134 IPC). The Police constable was suspended and a Magis- terial enquiry was declared by the Government. The Enquiry report was submitted within .10 days where the raped was denied, saying its a case of simple molestation. But, one year later, the Armyman was punished by the Army court.

(xxx) Four Army personnel entered the house of Mr. Kumud Hazarika, a resident of No. 2 Saboti Adarsha village near the District head quarter of Lakhimpur District at midnight on Jan'7, 1991 and forcibly dragged Mr. Kumud and his 60 years old mother to their courtyard and compelled them to stand out in extreme cold. Then Armymen raped Mrs. Nayantara Hazarika (25), mother of a one Mrs. Labanya Hazarika, the married sister of Mr. Kumud Hazarika, to the backyard of the house and raped her.

The few select cases documented above are enough to reveal and expose the systematic manner in which women and girls of the state are being made to lead the life Of increased existence at the peril of the Unified Command Structure. This only underlies the deep-rooted policy of the Government machinery to throttle the democratic aspirations of the masses.

Rape and torture in the cases of daily law enforcement measures flouts the basic rights since rape constitutes a dreaded form of violence on the ri-ht of a women on her body.

Inspite of national laws and international instruments the scourge of rape continues to wreck havoc on the women folk of the armed forces are motivated by the impulse to punish to and hart the victim. In fact, rape is being used to subjugate and terrify the entire population of the state.

This is a fervent appeal to all those committed to protection of women rights, which too constitute basic human rights to come to the assistance of womenfolk of the State by demanding punishment to all perpetrators of and put an end to the barbaric acts of the law enforcement personnel. MASS hopes that individuals and agencies the world over would raise their act-.ve concern at all available forums to make the Indian State machinery answerable and accountable in accordance with basic international instruments, which it is duly bounded to obey and observe.