India village council says woman's dignity worth only $412

A panchayat (village council) in Bareilly, Uttar Pradesh in North India has set Rs20,000 (S$412) as the cost for loss of a woman's dignity.

The village panchayat had urged the family of a woman who had been raped at gunpoint to accept the said amount and bury the past, reported in Tamil Nesan.

The rape occurred a fortnight ago. The 20-year-old woman was bringing lunch for her father who was at work in the fields when she was waylaid by a man who took her to a deserted spot and raped her at gunpoint.

The police, on seeing that the accused belonged to an influential family, initially refused to accept the complaint. They also turned down a request from the woman's family to conduct a medical examination.

Residents raised an uproar over the panchayat's decision and the inaction of the police. Many now want action taken against the panchayat.