Nine people have been arrested after a mob attacked a group of girls in northern India this weekend, while 34 girls were hospitalized, and several remain to be discharged, local media reported Tuesday.
Six boys and three women were arrested Sunday night after a group physically assaulted girls from a local state-run boarding school in the Supaul district of Bihar, India. Six others are alleged to have been involved in the attack according to a school staff member. "We were unarmed and had nothing to protect us. I saw many of my friends lying on the ground and crying with pain," a student said.
The girls, aged 10 to 14, had been targeted by local boys on a playground area Saturday. The boys entered the grounds and began verbally and sexually harassing the girls who fought back, some physically. The boys left and returned with their mothers and other villagers carrying iron rods and bamboo sticks. They proceeded to attack the girls, according to police.
“The boys and their parents were agitated because the girl students had beaten up some boys,” police superintendent Mrityunjay Kumar Choudhary said.
Baidynath Yadav, Supaul district magistrate, said 74 girls were on the playground at the time of the attack, 30 of them had been sent to the local hospital for treatment. As of Monday, 10 had yet to be released. “Action will be taken against all those found involved in the attack on the girls," Yadav told local media.
On Sunday, local residents took to the streets in protest of the attack. The girls returned to school Monday with heightened security in place.