Two men have been arrested in India’s Bihar state after shaving the heads of two women as “punishment” for resisting rape, the BBC reports, with police reportedly searching for five others involved in the crime.
The group of men, including a local government official, had burst into the home of the mother and her teenage daughter, intending to rape the daughter, according to The Independent, but the two women fought back. The men then assaulted them, shaved their heads, and publicly paraded them through the village.
“We were beaten with sticks very badly. I have injuries all over my body, and my daughter also has some injuries,” the mother said.
The incident is the latest in a string of audacious crimes against women in Bihar state, the BBC reports. In April, a teenage girl was attacked with acid when she resisted an attempted gang rape. A few months earlier, a woman was assaulted, stripped, and paraded naked through a village market.
In 2014, village elders in Bihar shaved the head of an orphan girl, smeared her face with black ash, and paraded her through the neighborhood to shame her for talking to her boyfriend in a public place, according to The Independent.
This month in the state of Uttar Pradesh, a man ran over and killed two women with his car, according to The Independent, after the women protested his attempt to molest one of their daughters.
Public outrage over sexual violence in India spiked after the 2012 gang rape and murder of a student on a Delhi bus, but extreme incidents of rape and violence against women continue to be reported across the country.
Nearly 40,000 rapes were registered in India in 2016, The Independent reports, citing the latest government data. Many rapes are not reported, however, due to fear of reprisal.