A 22-year-old Dalit woman has been gang-raped by eight men, including a DMK functionary, in Virudhungar. The DMK functionary Hariharan of Melatheru in Virudhunagar, befriended the woman, persuaded her to get physical with him, and filmed it.

Threatening to publicise the video on social media, Hariharan and seven others threatened the woman and raped her several times. Of the eight men, four were minor boys studying Class X, XI, and Class X. All the eight were arrested.

The police said that the woman working in a garment factory was in love with local youth. The accused had physical relations with her on the promise of marrying her and had filmed it on his mobile phone and showed it to his friends. Subsequently, seven others, including the four school students allegedly blackmailed and sexually assaulted her, police said.

After her family fixed her marriage, the woman approached the Virudhunagar district police and lodged a complaint. Virudhunagar Superintendent of Police M. Manohar said the police have arrested all the eight accused and were interrogating them.

They have been booked under various Sections of the Indian Penal Code for rape, outraging the modesty of a woman, and under the provisions of the Information Technology Act and Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, 1989. Further investigation is on.