Police in Karnataka have arrested a 62-year-old Hindu priest from the outskirts of Bengaluru for allegedly raping a 10-year-old girl inside a temple. Venkataramanappa has been sent to judicial custody after doctors confirmed that the girl had been raped by the Hindu priest.
According to media reports, Venkataramanappa was visiting one his daughters in Devanahalli. His son-in-law, who is the priest of the Chowdeshwari temple, had to leave the town for some work and requested Venkataramanappa to carry out the religious duties of the temple.
According to Deccan Herald, CK Baba, Deputy Commissioner of Police (Northeast), said that around 4.30 pm on Tuesday, Venkataramanappa saw the girl playing near his house on 24 November around 4.30 PM. The girl’s father, according to the report, runs a scrap shop nearby. Venkataramanappa allegedly called her inside his daughter’s house, which is inside the temple’s vicinity, on the pretext of giving her sweets.
The girls’ father frantically looked for his daughter when she didn’t return home in the evening. A local woman, who sells flowers inside the temple, said that she had seen the girl enter the priest’s house. The family visited the priest’s house and reportedly saw the girl coming out crying.
According to the police, a crowd gathered inside the temple. The girl was immediately taken to a government hospital for medical tests. The priest has been booked for rape under the Indian Penal Code (IPC) and the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (Pocso) Act on the basis of the CCTV footage and the statement made by the woman selling flowers.
Meanwhile, netizens have trended hashtag #RapistPoojary demanding stringent action against Venkataramanappa.
10 year old girl raped by a temple priest in Bangalore.
The rapist pujari should be hanged till death.@PMOIndia @HansrajMeena@_garrywalia @pmlucknowoffice@Chunni_lal_sahu @PMLUCKNOW@angeltime21 @shayar_suneel1@17Shaikhfarha @NeeloferSyed5@ShadabUmar92#RapistPoojary pic.twitter.com/DDMP889wD5
— Naseeb Khan (@NaseebKhan7223) November 26, 2020
Case1:Rape Victim is Minority/Dalit. Offender is Majority= Support Offender.
— ಭರತ್.ಪಿ (@Bharathpkgl) November 26, 2020
Temples are said to be holy. the Unholy rape culture should be condemned by the temple functionaries. First happened with Asifa in delhi now another child. When will Hindu priests start condemning these ugly culture within their community. pic.twitter.com/lsOS4YB8aU
— Himanshu Yadav (@HimanshuYadav_x) November 26, 2020
— Anchan_Shaila (Unemployed) (@Congress_Army) November 26, 2020