Indian woman marries ‘attacker’

Indian woman

The family of an Indian woman in the northern state of Orissa who married a man she accused of raping her has told the BBC she had “no other option”.

Her father told the BBC’s Hindi Service that the family was also considering withdrawing their complaint against the man, who has been freed on bail.

The woman has previously told local media that she was a willing participant in the marriage.

Rape and other sexual crimes are a taboo subject in Indian society.

Victims find it difficult to marry and are often blamed for inviting the attacks on themselves.

The woman’s father told the BBC he had no choice other than to marry his daughter to the alleged attacker.

“Her whole life would have been ruined. And we would have to put up with the embarrassment forever,” he said.

The wedding took place inside Jharpada jail on 28 January in Bhubaneswar, the state capital of Orissa, where the man had been held since his arrest last year on rape charges.

The judge ordered the prison officials to organise the wedding after the alleged victim and attacker filed a joint petition in court, requesting permission to marry.

‘My own decision’

“It was my own decision to marry him. Our parents also agreed to it. I am optimistic that we will have a smooth life,” the women was quoted as saying by The Times of India at the time of the ceremony.

The groom was freed on bail and the couple are now living with the bride’s family.

Sexual crimes in India have been in the spotlight since a student died after being gang-raped in Delhi in December 2012.