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NEW DELHI: India’s international image took another beating on Tuesday when an American tourist was gang-raped by a truck driver and his two associates in the hill tourist resort of Manali in Himachal Pradesh.
The latest sexual assault on a western woman tourist in India comes just a day after a 21-year-old Irish charity worker was drugged and raped in Kolkata.
The 30-year-old American woman tourist in Manali was returning home after visiting her friend when she was offered a ride by the culprits. They drove the truck to an isolated place and gang-raped her, according to police. Her medical examination confirmed the rape.
“The 30-year-old was raped by men in a truck on Monday night. They offered her a lift and she accepted it,” police inspector Abhimanyu Kumar was quoted as saying.
He said, “The woman cannot remember the number plate of the truck and she could not understand what the accused were talking about. They drove the truck to an isolated spot and raped her for nearly one hour.’’
All truckers in Manali are being scanned to identify the culprits.
The shameful incident comes just two days after a 21-year-old young Irish charity worker was drugged raped by a Kolkata businessman after a birthday party
Police said the accused Sujoy Mitra, a 35-year-old businessman, mixed her tea with drugs and then raped her.
Mitra, who has been remanded to police custody, took the Irish woman to his home after the party.
The two incidents of sexual assaults on western women come just after two months when a Swiss woman was gangraped in Madhya Pradesh (central India) while on trekking with her husband.
In January, British tourist Jessica Davies to the Taj Mahal in Agra said she escaped being raped by jumping from her hotel room balcony after the hotel manager tried to enter her room forcibly.
These incidents happened after the gangrape and brutal beating of a 23-year-old medical student in the Indian capital which sent shock waves across the world and triggered nationwide protests.
According to a survey, the number of foreign women tourists visiting India has dropped by 35 percent after the Delhi gangrape and the January incident involving the British woman tourist.
Many western nations have warned women against visiting India.