Niharika Rajput, who had been staging a hunger strike demanding the government’s attention to her five point demand, has broken her hunger strike after the government agreed to her demands. She drank a glass of juice on Thursday evening in the presence of Home Minister Bal Krishna Khand and members of the National Women Commission who had been urging the government’s attention towards Niharika’s plight.
According to Niharika, she was raped by Shivraj Shrestha of Janakpur on 23rd October, 2019, after her drink was spiked by the alleged rapist. The untoward event led her to conceive. Niharika, who was been campaigning for justice even before the birth of her child, has knocked doors of the police and the courts – however, had not been served with justice, a High Court acquitting the alleged rapist.
On Friday, 10th June, 2022, Neharika had begun her hunger strike with the following demands:
- A DNA test of her child. “Seeing me carrying a child in my arms until the final decision, why did the judge not see my child? Why did the court rule in favour of the [alleged] criminal, overseeing a single mother’s plight? A DNA investigation must be done”, she maintained.
- A date for hearing hasn’t been assigned despite an appeal being lodged four months ago. Me, and my child are suffering; the court must treat our case with urgency.
- The alleged rapist must be taken into custody, and a re-investigation should be launched.
- An investigation against the police personnel, lawyers, and judge who have been conspiring to weaken my case since the beginning.
- The state must ensure the welfare of my child – education, health and other basic rights.
Moving forward, a DNA test to match the alleged rapist with that of Niharika’s child will be organised, and the state has agreed to work towards the welfare of the victim and her child.