Teen molestation sparks outrage

Teen molestation sparks outrage

Four days after a teenage girl was stripped and groped by a group of men for more than half-an-hour on a busy road in Guwahati, the police said they had arrested four of the 11 men.

**TV GRAB** Pictures of the culprits who allegedly molested a girl student recently, in Guwahati on Friday. PTI PhotoA video clip of the incident shown on television has sparked national outrage as police were accused of tardy action with Union Home Minister P Chidambaram strongly condemning the incident.

Police said all the 11 were identified and efforts were on to trace the others involved in the crime on Monday night.

The 17-year-old teen was with another girl when she left the Club Mint on the busy G S Road about 9:30 pm on Monday. She was looking for an auto, when the men accosted her.

The other girl managed to escape. The teen’s cries for help fell on deaf ears till senior journalist Mukul Kalita, who happened to pass by, stopped the men and rescued her with the help of police who by then had arrived on the scene.

A video clip of the girl being molested was caught on camera and went viral on the net. The clip was aired on local channels on Tuesday morning, causing horror and outrage across the country.

In Guwahati, outraged activists put up hoardings across the city with photographs of the 11 culprits and asked people to inform the police about their whereabouts.
Krishak Mukti Sangram Samiti leader and Assam’s prominent anti-dam activist Akhil Gogoi accused the police of trying to shield the real culprits.

48-hour deadline

“We are giving 48 hours to the police to arrest the real culprits. We have gathered the video footage of the incident and we are going to submit it to the DGP [demanding] prompt action,” said Gogoi.

Gogoi named a Guwahati journalist as the main culprit. He also demanded a Central Bureau of Investigation inquiry into the incident. Several civil society organisations said they would take to the streets of Guwahati Sunday to protest against the incident.

“We have recorded the statement of the girl and registered a case against all those involved in the crime. We have identified all the culprits by checking the video footage,” said ASP (City) Longnit Teron.

“Four of them have already been arrested and search is on to trace the rest. But it is taking a little time as most of the accused seem to have gone underground,” he added. He assured the people that all the culprits would be arrested soon.

Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi said a separate task force would be set up to deal with crimes against women.

He set up a single-member inquiry commission comprising Additional Chief Secretary Emily Choudhury and asked for the report to be submitted in 15 days.

PC condemns incident

In Chandigarh, Chidambaram said he would get in touch with Chief Minister Tarun Gogoi and find out what action has been taken in the case. “Every incident of molesting a woman is condemnable... Nobody should make light of the incident of molesting a woman or molesting a child,” he said.

The NDA Presidential candidate, former speaker P A Sangma also expressed shock and contempt over the incident in Delhi. He demanded action against the guilty.

“I have been watching the news and it was the most horrid and shocking thing to see. A young girl was molested on the middle of road while hundreds of people stood as mute spectators. It is shameful,” said Sangma.

Watch the video here

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