Police on Sunday arrested a 20-year-old man in connection with a molestation incident in UP’s Rampur district, a video of which went viral on the social media. The video shows a group of men accosting two women on a deserted road. Then, one of the accused pulls the dupatta of one of the women and picks her up. The men are also seen molesting the woman as her companion pleads with them to let them go.
The incident took place on May 22, but police came to know of it on Saturday evening when the video went viral. The police claim to have identified 14 persons from the video. On Sunday, the police arrested prime accused Shehnawaz (20) of Kuwakhera village in Rampur. He was produced before the court, which sent him to judicial custody. Raids are being conducted to trace the other 13 accused, all residents of Kuwakhera village.
Police said they are yet to identify the two victims. SP, Rampur, Vipin Tada said, “A police team is trying to locate the women.” He added that during questioning, Shehnawaz told police that the incident occurred on May 22 at Kuwakhera village after an altercation between the women and the accused. Shehnawaz failed to name the person who videographed the incident and uploaded it on social media.
“After both the women are identified, we will get their statements recorded before the magistrate and start the process of identifying persons who misbehaved with them. In the video, we have identified 14 persons. Some of them appear to be minors,” said the SP. On the basis of the video, an FIR under IPC sections 354A (sexual harassment), 354B (assault or use of criminal force on a woman with intent to disrobe) and the Information Technology Act has been registered at Tanda police station.
Reacting to the incident, former UP minister Azam Khan, who is MLA from Rampur, told mediapersons, “Isme koi hairat ki baat to hai nahi. Maujuda Sarkar mein jitne balatkar Hua Hai, hatya Hui Hai, loot Hui Hai, isme koi hairat ki baat nahi hai.” (This is nothing unexpected. Considering the number of rapes, murders, looting incidents under this government, this is nothing unexpected). “Bulandshahr ke haadse ke baad har shaksh ko kamse se kam apni ghar ki aurton ko, koshish karna chahiye woh ghar mein rakhen (Following the Bulandshahr incident, every person should try to ensure that the women of his family stay at home),” he added.