The Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) which essentially handles anti-hijack and anti-sabotage responsibilities in the Delhi Metro network had their hands full at the Tilak Nagar Metro station on Tuesday night when a minor scuffle escalated into mob violence. Over 200 people vandalised the Metro station,while looking for two persons who they alleged had molested a woman.
According to police,a 22-year old woman,who was returning to her Tilak Nagar home from Karol Bagh along with her male friend,was allegedly molested and mistreated by two men.
The accused have been identified as Saurabh (22) and Gaurav (24). The woman told police that the two accused had also boarded the train at Karol Bagh and started teasing her. They tried to grab her hand,which led to an altercation between them and her male friend,who then called up his friends and relatives,asking them to come to the Tilak Nagar Metro station, said Deputy Commissioner of Police (Railways) B S Gurjar.
My niece had gone out with her fiance. The two men harassed them. They pulled my nieces hair and beat up her fiance, said the womans maternal uncle.
According to the CCTV camera footage,at 9.23 pm,a deboarding passenger informed the CISF personnel at the station about a brawl on the platform. Two personnel reached the platform at 9.25 pm and asked the people there if anything was wrong. On being informed that nothing was wrong,the two went back to their duties. Around the same time,the PCR was informed and Delhi police personnel also reached the Metro station.
Around 9.30 pm,the two men- Saurabh and Gaurav came running to the second concourse,looking for a place to hide. When a group of about 10 men came chasing them,the CISF and Delhi Police personnel hid the two in the Metro control room,the CCTV footage has revealed.
Things happened swiftly. Immediately,around 9.45 pm,an angry mob of about 200 gathered at the station. They demanded that the duo be handed over to them. The mob then vandalised the station. The CISF had no option but to use force, an official posted at the station said.
I was waiting for someone outside when I saw the mob come in. We heard that a woman was molested on the train and I too joined the group. The CISF tried to stop us and lathicharged us. All we asked them was to hand over the two boys who had molested the woman, Meet Singh,who was present at the spot when the incident happened,told Newsline.
The CISF personnel,who were barely 15 in number found it hard to handle the crowd. A truck-load of personnel was called in from the nearby CISF barracks at the Rajouri Garden Metro station. It was only then that we were able to push the mob out, a CISF official said.
The two men who were kept inside the Metro control room were later taken to the police station. Another man in his late-twenties and part of the mob,identified as Gurmeet Singh,was also handed over to the police. While a case of molestation has been registered against Saurabh and Gaurav,the three have also been booked for acting with an intent to create riot and other sections of the Delhi Metro Act.
Senior officials said the mob entered the paid area of the station by breaking the glass panels,which could be a very serious security threat. The entire situation was unprecedented. We need to factor in the incident in all our future security planning, CISF spokes-person Nishant Sankale said.