Five students of a private college in Dakshina Kannada district of Karnataka were arrested on Wednesday for allegedly raping their friend in March, the police said. The incident came to light this week after a video of the crime started doing the rounds on social media, PTI reported.
The police said the five students had allegedly raped the girl, who belongs to a minority community, after taking her in their car to a nearby forest. The accused had recorded the crime and threatened the girl to not tell anyone about the episode or they would share the video on social media.
Superintendent of Police BM Laxmi Prasad, however, dismissed rumours that the woman was drugged before being raped. The accused are reportedly active members of Puttur unit of Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad, The Times of India reported quoting unidentified officials.
“The incident took place during holidays,” the newspaper quoted the college authorities as saying. “Based on police complaint, we have suspended all five students.” The five students have been booked under Section 341 (wrongful restraint), Section 376 (d) (gang rape), the Scheduled Castes and Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, and Information Technology Act.
Prasad has also cautioned against sharing the video as it was an offence under Section 354C of the Indian Penal Code, and 66E, 67A of the Information Technology Act.