A six-year-old girl was allegedly raped and killed by a man in Kundam town of Jabalpur district, police said today.

The rape and murder of the minor sparked a protest in the town, about 40 km from the district headquarters.

The girl had gone missing from a religious programme organised to mark ‘Sharad Purnima’ near a school last night, Additional Superintendent of Police Sanjiv Uike said.

“Some artistes from Chhattisgarh were presenting a cultural programme when someone informed that a girl was lying in a pool of blood behind the school building,” Uike said.

The ASP said after seeing the crime scene, it was suspected that the girl was raped and killed as her clothes were not in order and the head was smashed with stones, he said.

“We investigated and looked for the person who first shared the information about the girl’s body. We zeroed in on a person identified as Sushil Dixit (26). After the arrest, we interrogated Sushil, who admitted to his crime,” he said.

Uike said Dixit admitted he lured the girl on the pretext of giving her chocolates and took her to the backside of the school building.

He said: “The accused admitted he raped the girl and later smashed her head against the wall and stoned her to death.”

A case has been registered against the accused for rape, murder and other relevant sections of The Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act, Uike said.

Shocked by the incident, area residents observed a ‘bandh’ in Kundam. A large number of people staged protest at local police station demanding the capital punishment for the accused.