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The police on Wednesday confirmed a gruesome rape and murder of a 9-year-old girl from Uri town and arrested the victim's stepmother, stepbrother and three others in connection with the case.

The girl, who was missing since September 2, was found dead with her eyes gouged out and acid thrown on her private parts, in the forest area situated a kilometre away from her house.

Speaking to reporters, Senior Superintendent of Police, Baramullah, Imtiyaz Hussain said, "During the investigation, police understood that someone from the family is involved and questioned few people at the police station. The girl's stepmother, stepbrother and three others are involved in the crime."

Hussain, while divulging details of the incident, said the minor girl's eyes were gouged out and acid was thrown on her private parts and chest.

"The probe team has seized all the murder weapons and a plastic can containing acid from the spot," he added.

The police claimed that the girl's stepmother along with other accused allegedly designed the murder plot after she found out that the girl's father was spending more time with his second wife instead of the accused and their minor son.

"On a fateful day, she (stepmother) took her stepdaughter to the nearby jungle and was armed with a sharp-edged knife. While she was on her way to the forest area with her stepdaughter, she signaled her son (stepbrother of deceased from the same father) aged about 14 years to be ready for the commission of the crime," Hussain said.

The girl was then gang-raped allegedly in the presence and at the instance of her stepmother. After the victim's stepbrother and his friends allegedly raped her, the police said that the minor girl's stepmother allegedly strangulated her and her stepbrother hit her head with an axe, killing her on the spot. One of the accused then poured acid on the victim's body and dumped the corpse in the bushes and covered it with twigs and branches.

The police officer said a charge sheet will be filed at the earliest to proceed with the investigation.
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