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Rohtak harassment case: Accused remanded till Dec 16

Photo shows two young sisters beating up eve-teasers with a belt in a moving bus in Rohtak on Sunday.  

Soon after a shocking video of two young sisters fighting off men who harassed them on a Haryana Roadways bus and showing most of the co-passengers remaining mute witness to the violence went viral on the social media, the Haryana Police swung into action and arrested the three youth.

They have since been remanded to judicial custody till December 6.

The episode, which brought alive the memories of the Nirbhaya gangrape case has not only highlighted the lack of security for women in Haryana, but also how men, including even government officials turn a blind eye to hooliganism in the State.

Meanwhile Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal has declared that the two brave girls, who had fought off their tormenters, would be honoured with cash awards on the occasion of Republic Day.

The incident had taken place on Saturday while the two sisters, Arti Kumar (22) and her sister, Puja, 19, were on their way from Rohtak to Sonepat. Three youth – later identified as Deepak, Mohit and Kuldeep of Asan village – were also travelling by the same bus. First they passed lewd comments and made obscene gestures at the girls, but the remained silent.

However, later when the trio tried to misbehave with a pregnant woman, the girls put up a stiff resistance and fought with them. Even as the men continued to misbehave with them, the girls held on to their collars and one of them even beat the boys up with a belt. But with neither the bus driver, conductor or the co-passengers, barring a few, coming to their help, the girls were finally thrown out of the bus by the culprits. During the course of the incident, many of the co-passengers were in fact seen dissuading the girls from lodging a complaint with the police. They also forced the two girls and the three culprits to get off the bus.

The incident was, however, recorded by the pregnant woman and this proved to be the undoing as it went viral on the social media on Sunday evening, stirring the police into action.

Rohtak SSP Shashank Anand said the accused men were arrested on Sunday evening.

A statement by the Haryana Government said both the girls had shown indomitable courage and bravery by opposing the misdemeanour of three youth who tried to molest them in a moving bus of Haryana Roadways at Rohtak. The government has also placed under suspension the drive and conductor of the bus for dereliction of duty.

Meanwhile, the Director General of Police and the head of the Transport Department have been directed to take effective steps for ensuring the safety and security of passengers especially women travelling in the Haryana Roadways buses.

The recording had also shown how the two girls, both students of Bachelors in Computer Application, were made to forcibly alight from the bus. But the pregnant woman also got off at the next stop and then accompanied the girls to the Sadar police station where police registered a case and the recording of the incident has been preserved.

Talking about the incident, young Puja said such men, who normally threaten girls with violence or rape, are actually weak. “A woman’s rape starts the moment she withstands the dirty looks of such men. If you hit back hard, then only you can survive, otherwise if you yield to their advances then rape is imminent.”

Her father, Rajesh Kumar, expressed hope that the bravery shown by his daughters would encourage other girls too to not give in to the advances of wayward men.

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Printable version | Apr 20, 2021 2:24:50 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/rohtak-sisters-fight-off-eveteasers-on-bus-video-leads-to-arrest/article6651792.ece

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