How an Indian woman located the dead rapist of her daughter
On a balmy morning possibly in February last year, two men arrived at a cremation ground on the banks of the Ganges, India’s holiest river.
They were there to perform a Hindu funeral rite. The men were lugging firewood, but were strangely not carrying a corpse.
Once they reached the cremation ground, things took a bizarre turn.
On the ground, the men constructed a pyre. One of them then reclined on the flames, cloaked himself in a white cloak, and shut his eyes. Only the first man’s head could be seen outside the cage of sticks when the other added more wood to it.
There were captured in these scenes in two pictures. The identity of the photographer and the presence of a third party are unknown.
Niraj Modi, a 39-year-old government school teacher, was reportedly the “dead” man. His father, a wiry farmer in his sixties named Rajaram Modi, was the other man.
Then, Rajaram Modi travelled to a court a distance of about 100 kilometres (62 miles) away with a lawyer and declared under oath that his son Niraj Modi had passed dead on February 27 at their home in their hamlet. He also provided invoices for the firewood he purchased for the ritual, along with two photographs from the cremation.
This happened six days after Niraj Modi was accused of rape by the police. In October 2018, Modi was charged with raping a 12-year-old girl who was also one of his students. The girl was attacked while she was by herself in a sugarcane field, and her assailant threatened to post a video of the crime online.
Soon after the mother of the girl filed a complaint, Modi was taken into custody and spent two months.