x Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 24 July 2017

Fake photo of rape victim goes viral on Facebook

The brutal gang-rape of the 23-year-old medical student and her death last Saturday has led to a bout of national soul-searching over the treatment of women in India and provoked daily protests.

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM, India // The father of a student in south India has complained to police after a photo of his daughter circulated on social media claiming it was the New Delhi gang-rape victim, officers said yesterday.

A picture tribute to the dead Delhi woman, who was repeatedly raped on a bus on December 16 and thrown out of the vehicle in a crime that appalled the nation, has gone viral on Facebook.

Her name and identity have been withheld by police and the media in line with a law that entitles victims of sex crime and their families to anonymity to protect them from social stigma.

Vinayakumar, an assistant commissioner in the cyber crime unit of Kerala police in south India, said that the photo used in the Facebook tribute was a fake and had caused distress. "We have received a complaint from the father stating that the photograph uploaded on Facebook as the Delhi rape victim picture was fake," the officer said.

"The picture used was his daughter's photograph uploaded with her Facebook profile. We have directed Facebook officials to delete the photograph and help us to track the culprits," he added.

The brutal gang-rape of the 23-year-old medical student and her death last Saturday has led to a bout of national soul-searching over the treatment of women in India and provoked daily protests.

* Agence France-Presse