NEW DELHI -- A Swiss woman who was touring by bicycle with her husband through the central Indian state of Madhya Pradesh was gang-raped by a group of eight men, police said Saturday.
Thirteen men were detained and questioned in connection with the attack, which occurred Friday night as the couple camped out in a forest after bicycling from the temple town of Orchha, local police officer R.K. Gurjar said.
The men beat the couple and gang-raped the woman, he said. They also stole the couple's mobile phone, a laptop computer and 10,000 rupees ($185).
The woman was in a hospital Saturday in the nearby city of Gwalior, Gurjar said, adding that she and her husband apparently suffered no major injuries.
Police detained 13 men and questioned them in connection with the attack, he said. Six of the men were released after questioning. No other details were immediately available.
Indian television stations showed scores of police searching the forest where the attack occurred.
"They had veered off the main road after sunset into the jungle and set up a tent to rest during the night," said Gurjar told the Washington Post. "Nobody goes into these jungles in the night. The cattle herders, wood collectors leave before dark. They were all alone and without help. They could have stayed in the village nearby or taken shelter at a school instead."
Madhya Pradesh has the highest incidence of rapes in the country, with more
"At a time when we are trying to promote tourism, especially tiger tourism and sacred Buddhist trails in the state, this kind of horrific crime will scare tourists away," Pankaj Chaturvedi, director of Air Aman Travels in Bhopal, the state capital, told the newspaper.
Last year, Madhya Pradesh attracted about 650,000 foreign tourists, a figure that tour operators wanted to increase by 20 percent this year, Chaturvedi said.
The incident in Datia occurred a day after another young woman was raped by three men in a moving bus in the city of Indore, also in Madhya Pradesh.
India has seen outrage and widespread protests against rape and attacks on women since December's fatal gang-rape of a young woman in a moving bus in New Delhi, the capital.
The crime horrified Indians and set off nationwide protests about India's treatment of women and spurred the government to hurry through a new package of laws to protect them.