The complaint filed with the police in Tamil Nadu's Salem District claims that the victim had rejected the accused's progress, causing a violent reaction.
"The girl was brutally murdered, the investigation continues, and the accused is arrested," said Ponkarthik Kumar, a senior police officer in the area.
Police have accused him of the act criminalizing caste-based violence. The law has existed in India since 1989.
The inferior castes, also known as Dalits, are one of the most marginalized groups in India's complex caste system – a community of people once known as untouchables, who have often denied the right to education and employment through systematic discrimination and abuse.
Despite the numerous laws and court rulings that tried to ensure a level playing field, deep-rooted bias has repeatedly curtailed progress, activists say.
"Why does not foundation show this power? These incidents happen constantly. When we push for defense, we must question the political will or challenge the lack of political will, "said Radhika Ganesh, a political activist who has been supporting Dalit's rights for years.
According to the National Bureau of Crimes Recording, the total number of crimes against lower casualties was over 47,000 in 2016.
"The reason behind the violence is the high level of politicization of caste-based politics, which has led to widespread abuse of political power," Ganesh said.
She complains about caste-based violence
The crimes against women in the act do not refer to Tamil Nadu statistics, accounting for only 5% to 8% of the total crimes against lower caste members, Jayna Kothari, executive director of the Center for Legal and Political Research. Kotari explained that certain offenses against those to be included are classified as regular offenses.
"This is a source of great concern, the question is that … it must be recorded as a crime on the grounds of sex or ill-treatment (inferior) situation, and they should both be isolated," Kotari said.
Earlier this year, the Supreme Court, in an ongoing case, overturned an important provision of the Law on Planned Cate and the Planned Race (Prevention of Mercy). The court ruled that the police could not immediately arrest a person accused of a crime against a lower caste.
The act is designed to protect people belonging to the inferior caste from the punishment or intimidation they could follow after filing a complaint and order the immediate arrest of the accused as a counter-measure.
Violent protests organized by Dalit groups broke out across the country, and the Indian government was forced to pass an executive order by skipping the Supreme Court order and returning their changes.
On Wednesday, activists in the capital of Tanil Nadu, Chennai, organized a protest called Violence of Silence that saw 300 people go through torrential rains to later protest in a long list of injustices.
"Kaste is an open practice that is accepted in Tamil Nadu." Everyone is silent about it, and silence is tantamount to creating the violence around her, "Gajes said.