India’s Uttar Pradesh state has ordered a federal probe into the alleged gang-rape and assault of a 19-year-old woman following protests. The state government has also suspended five police officials.

India’s main opposition Congress party on Sunday demanded that the District Magistrate of Hathras in Uttar Pradesh be removed due to his role in cremating the body of the alleged gang-rape victim without the permission of the family.  

Congress General Secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra, who met the family members of victim on 3 October, said the family had been treated badly by the top district official. Vadra, in a tweet in Hindi, called for his removal and an inquiry into his omissions. He also reportedly warned the family to remain silent.  

​The victim of the alleged gang-rape and assault died in a Delhi hospital on 29 September and her body was cremated by the district administration of Hathras in the early hours of 30 September.

Uttar Pradesh police had fortified the village and stopped access to lawmakers and media, some 200 kilometres south of Delhi, claiming it would disturb the law and order situation there.

Following widespread protests, the state government ordered a probe by the federal agency, Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) and lifted the siege of the village.

The family has demanded a judicial probe into the incident.