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Delhi: 16-Year-Old Girl Stabbed And Bludgeoned To Death, BJP Claims An Act Of 'Love Jihad'

The accused man, 20-year-old Sahil, has been arrested from Uttar Pradesh's Bulandshahr. He and the girl are said to have been in a relationship and he allegedly killed her after a quarrel.

Delhi Police arrests Sahil, accused in allegedly stabbing a minor girl in the Shahabad Dairy area of northwest Delhi, in Bulandshahr. PTI Photo
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A 16-year-old girl was stabbed over 20 times and bludgeoned to death in Delhi's Shahbad Dairy area on Sunday. 

The girl's killing, captured on a CCTV camera, led to massive outrage among people. While the Delhi Commission of Women (DCW) Chairperson Swati Maliwal issued a notice to the Delhi Police, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has claimed the incident was an act of 'Love Jihad'.

A day after the murder, the accused Sahil, 20, was arrested from Uttar Pradesh's Bulandshahr district on Monday. 

Besides the horrific manner of killing, the public apathy has also outraged people. In the footage of the murder, several people are seen standing nearby but no one is seen intervening.

What we know of the incident?

A 16-year-old girl, identified as Sakshi, was stabbed over 20 times and bludgeoned to death on Sunday in a bylane in northwest Delhi's Shahbad Dairy area.

The murder was caught on camera. Several people are seen at the site but no one is seen intervening. 

The accused Sahil, 20, was arrested from Uttar Pradesh's Bulandshahr district on Monday. 

Sahil and Sakshi are said to have been in a relationship "relationship" and they had a quarrel on Saturday. 

Sakshi had gone shopping on Sunday evening for the birthday party of her friend's child when she was accosted by Sahil in the densely populated neighbourhood, according to police.

A nearly 90-second video shows the accused pinning the victim to a wall with one hand and stabbing her repeatedly. He did not stop even when the girl slumped to the ground, jabbing the knife into her over 20 times, kicking her and then slamming a cement slab on her repeatedly.

In a shocking display of public apathy, people can be seen passing by, with some bystanders staring in alarm, but not doing anything to stop the brutal attack. 

The accused is seen walking away from the victim in a casual manner only to turn back and again hit her with the slab before leaving the site.

Delhi Police PRO Suman Nalwa said the accused Sahil worked as a fridge and AC mechanic. He lived in a rented accommodation with his parents and three siblings in Shahbad Dairy area.

A case under Section 302 (murder) of the Indian Penal Code has been registered at Shahbad Dairy police station on the complaint by the victim's father, the police added.

The police suspect that "strained relationship" of the accused with Sakshi could be a possible reason behind the crime.

A police officer said that the girl's skull was ruptured, citing preliminary findings of the post-mortem.

Sakshi, whose father is a labourer, passed Class 10 this year. The victim's parents, who are residents of JJ Colony in Shahbad Dairy and have a younger son, said she was staying with her friend Neetu for the last 15 days since the latter's husband was out of Delhi for work.

Reactions to Sakshi's murder

Delhi Commission for Women (DCW) Chairperson Swati Maliwal said that she has "never seen such a frightening case". 

"I have never seen such a frightening case. What was the fault of the 16-year-old girl that she was brutally killed on the road? Several people saw this but did not pay heed. No one is afraid of the police and the law in Delhi," said Maliwal.

Maliwal also issued a notice to the Delhi Police over the incident. The notice demanded the immediate arrest of the accused and the submission of action taken report to DCW within 48 hours.

Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and other Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leaders attacked Lieutenant Governor VK Saxena, saying it was his responsibility to maintain law and order in the city. 

"A minor girl was brutally murdered in Delhi. This is very sad and unfortunate. The criminals have become fearless, there is no fear of the police. LG sir, law and order is your responsibility, do something," Kejriwal said.

Calling the incident "extremely disturbing and appalling", the National Commission for Women (NCW) said its Chairperson Rekha Sharma has written to the Commissioner of Police to conduct a fair and time-bound investigation in the matter.

The NCW has formed a three-member team headed by member Delina Khongdup to look into the matter."

BJP raises 'Love Jihad' issue

After the murder of Sakshi, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has claimed that it is an act of 'Love Jihad'.

The 'Love Jihad' refers to the conspiracy theory that Muslim men approach non-Muslim women and girls, primarily Hindu, with the sole objective of converting them to Islam and they get violent if they don't convert. The conspiracy theory is given traction by BJP and Hindu right wing organisations. 

The BJP slammed the AAP for "trying to portray" it as an "ordinary" murder and a law and order issue.

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In a statement, Delhi BJP President Virendra Sachdeva said the case should be tried in a fast-track court.

Sachdeva claimed locals had informed him that the accused was harassing the minor girl for "a long time".

It is "regrettable" that the Chief Minister of Delhi was "trying to portray" the "brutal killing" of a Hindu girl as a law and order issue, whereas it is a case of "Love jihad", Sachdeva said.

"The red Kalawa (sacred thread) tied on the hand of arrested Sahil Sarfaraz clearly showed that he is a member of Love Jihad gang working in a well-planned manner," Sachdeva charged in his statement.

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(With PTI inputs)

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