File photo.

New Delhi - A 10-year-old girl was allegedly raped for three months by three men including a 65-year-old watchman in India's central city of Bhopal, police said Saturday.

The accused lived in the same neighbourhood and sexually assaulted the girl at a house owned by a woman, an accomplice in the crime.

The girl had complained to her mother, a domestic helper, about the abuse on Thursday after which they approached the police.

"The girl told us that the woman had offered her chocolates to lure her to her house where the accused committed the crime. They later threatened her not to tell anyone about it," police officer Shivnath Yaduvanshi said, adding that the abuse had been occurring since August.

"We have arrested all four, including the woman for helping the men assault her. Neighbours angered [by] the crime also thrashed some of the accused," he added.

The accused face charges of gang-rape and have been sent to jail pending trial.

India has been in the spotlight in recent years over incidents of sexual violence against women. In 2012, the fatal gang rape of a student on a bus in New Delhi led to massive public outcry and tougher laws.