| The boy with the fractured leg being treated at the emergency ward at Patna Medical College and Hospital on Friday. Standing by the bed is the girl who was tormented and her elder brother. Picture by Ranjeet Kumar Dey |
Patna, March 1: Two girls, out on a morning stroll on the grounds of Patna College, were abused and molested by a group of four youths, all said to be students of the institution.
The youths then severely assaulted a bunch of six boys, including the brother of one of the girls, who had rushed in to help after hearing their cries. One of the boys who tried to fend off the molesters is in PMCH with a fractured leg.
The injured youths say they dialled 100 — the Patna police control room number — at least four times but didn’t get any response — a claim rebutted by the police. They then called up on the mobile phone of the Patna city superintendent of police, following which help arrived.
Based on the complaint of the victims, the police have lodged an FIR against four boys, two of them boarders of Jackson Hostel of Patna College. The two others named are suspected to be living in the same hostel illegally. All four are absconding.
“The boys have been identified as Satyam alias Ujjwal, Varun, Amardeep and Mritunjay Kumar. The police know that two of them are students of Patna College and boarders of Jackson Hostel. The other two are staying at the hostel too but they can be illegal boarders. They will be arrested soon,” deputy superintendent of police (town) Manoj Tiwary told The Telegraph.
The shocking incident is another example of the utter lack of respect for women among a section of men in Patna and comes a day after finance minister P. Chidambaram announced the Nirbhaya Fund to provide security to women.
The two girls, aged between 22 and 24 years, live in a private hostel about half a kilometre away from Patna College. One of the girls is a student of Magadh Mahila College while the other is sitting for competitive examinations.
The girls said they were regular morning-walkers at the Patna College grounds. “There are at least seven or eight of us who go for morning walks. But for about a week now, a group of four boys belonging to the hostel are continuously bothering us by making lewd comments and hurling abuses. We usually ignore them. Today, most of the other girls refused to go because of the constant eve-teasing. But my friend and I decided not to break the schedule and we went to the ground. I know that my brother and his friends also go there, so there is a sense of security. We had walked for around 15 minutes, when, around 6.45am, the four boys came and started to make lewd comments. They then went one step ahead and tried to grope us, upon which we raised an alarm. One of my brother’s friends heard us and alerted the others and they all rushed to our rescue,” one of the girls told The Telegraph.
Her elder brother, who lives in a private hostel near Ashok Rajpath, said the rogue Romeos left when they were confronted.
“They quietly left when we took them on. We then asked my sister and her friend to leave the ground and wait near the college gate, a walk of about three minutes. We went back to fetch our bikes which were parked on the college campus. We were just about to start our vehicles when the four youths returned, this time with more boys in tow, all armed with rods and sticks. We couldn’t count how many of them were there as they started to beat us badly. The assault continued for around five minutes after which all of them fled. One of my friends was bleeding heavily and couldn’t stand up. I started dialling 100 but there was no response even after four attempts. Then, I called up the mobile number of Patna city SP Jayant Kant and he assured me that a police team would reach shortly. A police team came around 6.55am. My injured friend was immediately transferred to the PMCH. We have given our statements to the police,” the youth said.
Rash Bihari Prasad Singh, the principal of Patna College, said the police had informed the institution about the incident. “This is a serious incident and a meeting of the disciplinary committee of the college has been called tomorrow morning. Strict action will be initiated against the boys. We are trying to know more about these boys from our records,” Singh said.