On May 3, a 42-year-old woman sustained serious burns after her alleged lover, neighbour and colleague a 50-year-old man threw acid at her. The attacker was caught and beaten up by the public before handing him over to the police in Tirupur, Tamil Nadu. 

The victim, Thangamani is a resident of Shastri Nagar who is separated from her husband and was working in an apparel factory to earn her livelihood. She was allegedly in a relationship with the attacker named Dhandapani, and they used to have verbal fights often, The New Indian Express reported. 

Similar, verbal altercation happened between the two on May 2, and the next day when Thangamani was on her way to work, Dhandapani blocked her near Tirupur Corporation’s first zone office located at Anupparpalayam and threw acid on her. 

The victim immediately sustained burn injuries on her face, back and right arm. She was rescued by a passerby who also sent her to Government District Headquarters Hospital where she is receiving treatment. Meanwhile, the attacker is also receiving treatment at a hospital after receiving injuries due to the mob attack.

Crime against women is on the rise in India, and acid attack is one of the most common forms of violence. According to National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB) data, 41 cases of acid attacks were reported in 2015, and the highest number of such cases was reported in India’s capital Delhi with 19 attacks. Data from a year before that shows 241 persons were arrested for acid attacks and 57 were arrested for attempt to acid attack. 

The Supreme Court of India though banned the open selling of acid, yet several incidents of acid attack have regularly been reported across the country. In fact, recently more than one case of women throwing acid on men has also come to light that shows how authorities and law enforcement agencies have failed to implement this ban.