Gargi College molestation: Delhi Police registers FIR on complaint by college principal

Media outside the Gargi college gate on Monday, New Delhi, February 10, 2020.

Media outside the Gargi college gate on Monday, New Delhi, February 10, 2020.   | Photo Credit: Bibek Chettri

During the college festival, ‘Reverie’, around 6:30 p.m. on February 6, groups of unruly, drunk men mobbed the entrances of the college and forced their way in

Delhi police on Monday registered an FIR against unknown persons on the complaint by the Gargi College principal in the alleged molestation of students by a group of men who had gatecrashed a cultural festival, said a police officer.

Atul Thakur, DCP (South), said that the complaint states that on February 6, during the fest, some persons barged into the college and molested the students.

"On the complaint of principal, FIR has been registered under sections of 452 (trespass), 354 (assault or criminal force internet to outrage modesty of women) and 509 (criminal intimidation) at Hauz Khas Police station," said Mr Thakur.

He added that they have requested the principal to ask the students to forward and record their statement.

Earlier in the day, a police team under supervision of Additional DCP Geetanjali Khandelwal was probing the incident. The team went to the college to record statements of students, bouncers, security guards and teachers.

They are also scanning CCTVs installed at the entrance gate to get any clues in the case.

Stringent punishment for culprits: Kejriwal

Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Monday said misbehavior with women students at Gargi College was “extremely unfortunate” and the accused must be given stringent punishment.

“The misbehaviour with our daughters at Gargi College is extremely unfortunate. This cannot be tolerated at all. The culprits should be given stringent punishment. It should be ensured that the children studying in our colleges are safe,” Kejriwal said in a tweet.

Union HRD Minister Ramesh Pokhriyal 'Nishank' says that "outsiders" were to blame for the molestation of students at Gargi College. He was responding to a question in the Lok Sabha. "The incident has been carried out by outsiders, not students. But it is not a good thing. The college administration has been asked to take note of it and instructions have been given to take action against the culprits."

Delhi BJP chief Manoj Tiwari said the college administration should immediately provide CCTV camera footage of the campus to the police. “What happened at Gargi college is highly condemnable, culprits should be apprehended at the earliest. College admin should get CCTV footage and release the same to investigation agency and media on priority... so that culprits can be booked,” Mr. Tiwari tweeted.

Delhi Congress president Subhash Chopra slammed the police and the government for “failing” to protect women. “I am very much anguished by the Gargi college incident. What could be more sorrowful that the girl students are not safe in their own college in the national capital. It’s highly shameful that Delhi Police silently watched the atrocities against women. The Centre and Kejriwal government cannot escape the responsibility of women safety,” Mr. Chopra said in a tweet.

Protest at gate

Meanwhile, scores of students of the all-women college staged a protest at its gate against the alleged incident, demanding strict action against the intruders. 

Priya Singh, a witness to the incident, said, “The police force and the RAF did nothing to control the situation while the non-teaching staff turned a blind eye even as some inebriated men intruded the campus. Female students were harassed both verbally and sexually.”

A delegation of the Delhi University Students’ Union (DUSU) met officials of the Gargi College and demanded an inquiry into the incident. The students’ body also wrote to principals of all DU colleges urging authorities to ensure security of students during college fests.

Women panel’s notice

Taking suo motu cognisance of the incident, the Delhi Commission for Women (DCW) issued notices to the Delhi police and the college administration and sought information on the action taken against the alleged “miscreants.”

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Printable version | Apr 8, 2020 2:26:58 AM |

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