Chandigarh: A day after CNN-IBN highlighted how a victim of alleged sexual harassment was beaten up in full public view by the Punjab police, some action is finally being taken. Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal on Tuesday ordered a magisterial probe into the incident after nationwide outrage.
A high-level team of the Scheduled Caste/Scheduled Tribe commission, including the Vice-Chairman, is also heading to Tarn Taran in Punjab. The woman who was beaten up has demanded that strict action be taken against the policemen. "I appeal to the government to investigate the matter. Where are our politicians when we need them? They come to us only when they need votes," she said.
She also said the police were trying to offer her bribe to take the case back. "They are trying to bribe us, but this is not going to happen," she said.
The Shiromani Akali Dal government in Punjab has promised not to spare the guilty policemen. Shiromani Akali Dal MP Naresh Gujral has assured that the Punjab government will not spare the guilty policemen. "It is a shameful thing happening. Police insensitivity across the country is an issue. There is a need to look at the police training. These erring police officials will not be spared and strong action shall be taken after inquiry. No politician will be allowed to interfere," Gujral said.
This came after two Punjab policemen in Tarn Taran slapped and beat up a woman in full public view. The police beat up the young woman and her father after she went to them with a complaint of sexual harassment.
The visuals showed the woman being manhandled by two policemen. The woman alleged she was sexually harassed by truck drivers. When her family confronted them, policemen nearby allegedly took the side of the truckers. The Superintendent of Police is now looking into the matter and a report on the case will be submitted in a week. Two policemen have been suspended.
"My father and brother went to talk to the truck drivers who were harassing me. The policemen standing there asked what was happening. Once they learned what happened they took the drivers' side and started beating us," the woman alleged.
The state government and police have come under attack from activists and politicians following the incident. Samajwadi Party MP Jaya Bachchan said, "Everyday media is reporting a new incident. Has anything happened? Nothing has happened. I feel as helpless as a common person."
The National Commission for Women said the state home minister must resign. "This barbaric incident took place when the girl went to the police for help, it is their duty to ensure that a judicial probe looks into the matter. The state home minister must also resign," NCW Chairperson Mamta Sharma said.