In a classic case of evading responsibility, a Mohali rape survivor had to switch between police stations to file a FIR before giving up because SHOs of two police stations fought over jurisdiction under which the alleged rape case happened. While the senior officers in Mohali Police came to know about the issue and suspended one of the SHOs, under whose jurisdiction the case happened, National Commission for Women has also taken a Suo Moto action urging the Director General of Police, Punjab, Dinkar Gupta to take strict and immediate action.
“The commission is seriously concerned about the reported police apathy in the matter and the negligence shown by the police despite the provision of zero FIR in the law.” the letter stated.
The National Commission for Women has taken Suo-Motto cognizance in this matter reported by the media “Mohali: Rape survivor knocked on doors of two police station” urging the DG of Police, Punjab @DGPPunjabPolice,to take strict and immediate action. pic.twitter.com/ZEf46n8Kns
— NCW (@NCWIndia) April 18, 2019
The 22-year-old woman could get the FIR registered after two days. It happened on April 15 when the accused picked the woman up in his taxi from the area, which reportedly comes under the jurisdiction of Phase VIII Police Station, to drop her to a call centre where she worked. But instead of taking her to her workplace, he took her to an open ground opposite a government building and raped her, police said. The open ground area comes under the jurisdiction of Sohana Police Station. Then he allegedly took her to an open place near a village, which also comes under the jurisdiction of Sohana Police Station, and again tried to rape her. But the woman managed to escape of the pretext of puking and called up Mohali police control room.
The police control further informed inspector Daljeet Singh, station house officer, Sohana but he did not visit the spot. In fact he sent a junior-level cop to investigate the case. He reached the place where the alleged crime happened and verified it. The Sohana Police settled by saying that since the accused picked her up from Phase VIII jurisdiction, she should file a case in Phase VIII Police Station. This is when she lost hope and went back home without getting her case registered in either of the police stations.
“The commission is seriously concerned about the reported police apathy in the matter and the negligence shown by the police despite the provision of zero FIR in the law,”
The next day when senior officers came to know about this, they suspended SHO Daljeet of Sohana Police Station and registered the case.
Crimes against women rose between 2017 and 2018 in the city, according to a TOI report which analysed the data from Mohali Police. An increasing number of women visit the police stations to file complaints as the police stations registered 273 cases by women in 2018 compared to 227 in 2017. These cases filed by women are of dowry harassment and demand, suicide, attempt to murder, rape, kidnapping, assault etc.
“It is a positive sign that more women are coming forward with complaints,” said officials in the department. In 2018, the Mohali police registered 66 rape cases against 46 in 2017. “We are doing our best to trace and solve the cases,” said Mohali SSP Harharan Singh Bhullar.
Picture credit- STP