The 16-year-old girl, who was battling for her life after being allegedly raped and set on fire by a youth in Greater Noida, succumbed to her injuries on Wednesday.
According to ANI, she passed away at around 3.30 am in the Safdarjung Hospital in Delhi.
The girl had suffered over 95 percent burns in the incident that occurred on Monday in Tigri village in Greater Noida West.
When she had been admitted to the hospital, officials at Safdarjung Hospital had said that the girl was admitted in the Burn ICU and her condition was critical. "She is extremely critical. She was brought in with around 95 percent thermal burns in a case of sexual assault as alleged by her parents," Poonam Dhanda, PRO of Safdarjung Hospital, had said.
"There are burns all over her body except for the upper portion of her face and head," she had said.
The girl had been injured so badly due to the burns that doctors had said they had not yet been able to perform any examination on her to confirm sexual assault.
The police said the accused, aged 18 years, has been taken into custody. PTI reported that he was a neighbour of the victim's family. Other reports added that he was the girl's boyfriend.
The incident took place on Monday when Ajay Sharma, the accused, allegedly went to the girl's house and met her on the roof where he raped her and set her ablaze. He then fled the spot.
“At about 2.30 am (on Monday), Ajay came to meet my daughter. The duo was having an affair. They met on the roof, where he raped her and set her ablaze. He fled from the spot,” Hindustan Times quoted the victim's father as saying.
According to constable Yadram Singh of the Bisrakh police station, Ajay Sharma "had burns on his hands" and was charged with rape, attempted murder, assault of a minor and causing grievous injury, reported Associated Press.
Another Zee News report added that the girl's father, who runs a tailor shop, found his daughter covered with burn injuries on the roof.
The HT report also said that around ten months ago, the family had filed a complaint against Sharma, saying that he repeatedly kept peeping into their house. The girl's father added that they did not follow up on the complaint becuase Sharma's family had promised that he would not disturb them again.
ANI reported that Sharma's family is now pleading for clemency for the accused, stating that Sharma is a minor.
According to PTI, Circle Officer Rakesh Yadav said a police team has been deployed in Tigri to deal with any untoward incident arising from the alleged crime.
This horrific incident is yet another in a chain of crimes against women in Delhi and the National Capital Region (NCR) zone, where the Delhi gangrape case of 2012 had led to nationwide outrage and a revision of rape laws.
However, it is clear that more action — like better policing and education — still needs to be taken to stop the alarming frequency of such heinous crimes against women.
(With agency inputs)