What happens when you face sexual harassment and you go and register a case with the police as a conscientious citizen who believes that the country’s law enforcing system will provide her relief? Here is what happens: your mother is severely beaten up, your brother is implicated in a false case and is arrested and you and your family are threatened with dire consequences if you do not withdraw your case. Crime rules in Ulhasnagar, not far from Mumbai, the financial capital of the country.
[name redacted to protect identity] lives in Ulhasnagar with her two brothers and her mother. When she could no more put up with the sexual harassment by a neighbour; she decided to act. She also decided to follow the law as a good citizen and went and registered a case. Little did she know of the ordeal awaiting her and her family.
No action was taken against the accused; but she started getting pestered to withdraw her case. The pressure mounted when she refused. On 26th April 2014, when she and her brothers were away, the Chairman of the Society where she lives, and his daughter along with four other men, beat her mother severely with bamboo sticks at 7 PM right in the premises of the Society, till she became unconscious. On gaining consciousness, she called her children and advised the son who was nearest, to seek help from police.
That’s again being a responsible citizen, right? Unfortunately law operates differently for the likes of her, for the Aam Adami and for those with political clout: she received no help. So, she herself went to the police station to lodge a complaint. She found that the Chairman, Shri Anil Kumar Pandey was already there and she refused to give a statement under duress. Ultimately, [name redacted] and the other brother reached the police station and the formality of filing an FIR was completed by 10 in the night. To add insult to injury, she was to see a counter complaint filed against her and her family.
What happens next? The police detain the brother and implicating him under serious charges, arrest him! The family is threatened with dire consequences if the original complaint is not withdrawn. And those who are terrorizing the hapless family are of course moving about freely.
Is it because Shri Anil Kumar Pandey is a local neta of the NCP? Does the law operate differently when a neta of the party in the ruling alliance is involved? Is this not a loud and clear signal for the public, the Aam Adami, to beware of trying to oppose the high and mighty political masters?
But the girl has decided to fight it out. As a last resort, she has appealed to AAP to try and get her justice. AAP is leading a crusade against corruption at all levels. as a part of the crusade, it is our duty to highlight such incidents. We demand that a proper investigation be conducted in the entire matter and justice be delivered. And we also wish to make an appeal to the Home Minister Shri R R Patil to carry out his moral responsibility of providing a woman with security.
press release from Aam Aadmi Party Maharashtra media cell.