She was raped by her grandfather. Anticipating support and comforting hugs, she confided in her mother but she received none. The mother chided her, beat her up, and blamed her of making up stories to disgrace the old man. The grandfather went on to repeat his crime many more times.
The first time she was raped, ten years of age at the time, bled profusely. The grandfather took her to hospital. No one knows what transpired between the grandfather and the doctor but despite the tell-tale signs of sexual violence, no police case ever followed her treatment.
Then her father came home from abroad. She approached him for his fatherly protection. She did not receive it from him either. He raped her instead. Only this time the ordeal went on for 5 long years until she decided to take her own life by taking pesticide but was rescued by passers-by.
This is the story of a young girl from Nepal. The local media call her Pooja Karki, an alias to protect her true identity. The victim is now safe and under the protection of Raksha Nepal, an NGO based in Kathmandu.
Pooja’s suffering began when her grandfather began raping her when she was merely ten year old. He called her to his bedside on a rainy day. The unsuspecting minor obediently went to him who then forced her clothes off and committed the heinous crime. Her mother beat her up when Pooja complained to her about the grandfather’s actions. She said to Pooja, a local TV station’s online video shows, ‘We need his pension for your books and notebooks.’
As a result, the old man continued his horrendous crime until, in a bizarre way, her own father took over the crime.
In a video available online, Raksha Nepal’s president Menuka Thapa called the father ‘sexually sick’ because he needed his daughter with him round the clock. Prakash Bahadur Karki, the father, was so obsessed with his daughter that he banged her head against the wall if she refused to give in to his ceaseless sexual oppression.
Shocking accounts of his exploitation have emerged. Her nightmare would not cease even after she collapsed under the duress of his torture. She would find the devil over her when she came to. And he assaulted her routinely, it is learnt.
Prakash victimised his own daughter despite the fact that he has three wives in Nepal and a mistress in Macau. He would create a conducive environment for his ulterior motive by sending his wife (wives) to work in the field. His animalistic attacks would commence as soon as they were left on their own and all hell broke loose for the young girl. The sheer terror experienced by her is beyond anyone’s imagination.
Ironically, things finally changed for good when mid 2014 Pooja decided to take her own life by taking poison. Providence had other plans. Passers-by saw her and rescued her along with a suicide note that said, among other things, that she chose death because she did not want to be the ‘mistress to her own father’ and that upon her death her father and grandfather should be hanged.
From then on, things spiralled out of control for Prakash. He could not manipulate events anymore. He could not anymore suppress the public interest in the matter. A Nepalese judge recently sentenced him to 18 years in prison. And the grandfather committed suicide. He was 73.
Despite this unspeakable horror that she went through, a horror unleashed by those who were her supposed protectors, Pooja in 2014 passed her High School examination (School Leaving Certificate) with a flying 83 percent score. She said to a Nepalese television station that she always dreamt of becoming a medical doctor and still wants to be one.
In a country where the government welfare system is next to non-existent, Pooja’s future, and that of her dream to be a doctor, rests solely on the huge public interest generated by an explosion of media reports. Given the determination she has exuded so far it is highly likely that one day she would fulfil her dream.
However, there is one wish of Pooja that will always remain unfulfilled, huge public support notwithstanding. She demands death penalty for her father. But the Nepalese law does not have provisions of capital punishment. The Himalayan nation abolished death penalty in 1997.