Local MP Kirron Kher tells Hina Rohtaki the Chandigarh Police had clear instructions from the Home Ministry to act as per law in the stalking case. Excerpts from the interview:
Do you feel this stalking incident has maligned the ‘safe city’ image of Chandigarh?
Obviously. I feel bad as everybody has been discussing Chandigarh, this particular incident and boys being let off. These incidents happen everywhere, like the one in Chennai in which a woman was hacked to death by a stalker. The mindset of men worries me. How are they becoming like this and why are they doing all this? This all frightens me. But Chandigarh Police acted so promptly and saved the girl. We should not think Chandigarh is an unsafe city because of this case.
It was alleged that the police watered down the charges because of political pressure. What is your comment?
Chandigarh Police was not under any political pressure. It was just that the statement given by the girl before the magistrate had not mentioned the abduction attempt, as I was told. Probably she had forgotten. Now the police may have got enough evidence to invoke the abduction bid charge. I did speak to DGP and he clarified that there is no political pressure. Moreover, when I spoke to Home Ministry, even they said that they had given clear instructions to Chandigarh Police to take action as per law.
It was said that blood and urine samples of the accused were not taken, as per the medical report. I don’t know much about it. But whatever the case may be, the accused were charged with drunken driving.
Did Haryana BJP chief Subhash Barala try to contact you?
Not at all. Moreover, I am an MP, not the DGP. It was said that CCTV cameras on that stretch were non-functional, even on those points which have heavy traffic points. I asked the DGP about the CCTV grabs when I learnt about this fact. He said that they did have sufficient CCTV evidence. It can be police cameras as well. But yes, CCTV cameras on all the points should be in working condition.
Would you like to say something about Varnika who stood up for herself?
Oh, she is a brave and strong girl. The good thing is that she used great presence of mind. She called the police immediately and even noted down the number of the vehicle.
This incident has shaken many college girls and working women in Chandigarh. Do you have any message for them?
Such incidents happen all over the world but it is not that girls should sit at home. We can’t let those people win who want to see girls sit at home. We don’t need to be afraid of anything. It is just that we need to be careful and use presence of mind, like the girl did here by calling up the police, noting down the number. As parents, we must be careful so that kids don’t risk themselves. Parents must control their boys. It’s boys who do such silly things.