A local court in Vaishali issued an arrest warrant against five people for assaulting and tonsuring a 48-year-old woman and her 19-year-old daughter in Bihari village on June 26. The women were assaulted and ‘punished’ by a local councillor, after they protested against his attempt to rape the daughter. A video of the incident had become viral on social media and the police had arrested the councillor and four others for their alleged involvement.
Dr Rajulben L Desai, member of the National Commission for Women (NCW) , who visited the victims, asked the Bihar government to provide adequate compensation and free legal aid to help the women get justice. Rachna Raj, secretary of the district legal service authority (DLSA), also met the victims and provided them with a legal advisor.
Vaishali SP MS Dhillon said that a plea for the arrest of five accused, identified as Md Manjur Ansari, Md Kalim, Md Ishtewar, Md Javed and Md Padua, was submitted in the court of additional chief judicial magistrate Alok Kumar Mishra on Saturday, following which the court issued an arrest warrant against them, after a hearing on Tuesday.
Read | 2 women assaulted, tonsured for resisting rape bid by councillor in Bihar
Two of the accused,ward councillor Mohammad Khurshid and barber Dasrath Thakur, were arrested immediately after the incident and are already in judicial custody.
“The court has issued an arrest warrant against the five named accused. Now, we will go ahead with the due procedure,” said Sanjay Kumar, SHO of Bhagwanpur police station. He said that a case has been registered against seven people under section 376 (punishment for rape), 511 (punishment for attempting to commit offences), 354b (assault or use of criminal force to woman with intent to disrobe), 509 (Word, gesture or act intended to insult the modesty of a woman) of the IPC.
The police informed that the victims recorded their statements before the court of second class judicial magistrate, Vandana, under sections of 167 CrPC. In her statement, the middle-aged woman revealed that all the accused forcibly entered their house and tried to rape her daughter. When she protested, the accused persons abused and beat up the victims. The women approached some of their fellow villagers, who took them to the police station.
The Bihar state women’s commission has also sought strong action against the accused. Dilmani Mishra, the commission’s chairman, said that the incident was highly condemnable.
“I have talked to eyewitnesses, the police and visited the spot where the incident occurred. I will send a report to the NCW,” said Desai.