Mumbai, March 12: A 17-year-old girl was allegedly molested and almost stripped in daylight in the western Mumbai suburb Kandivli on Monday, police said today.
Four construction and transport workers aged between 20 and 24 have been arrested. Search is on for two more suspects.
The attack happened at 4.30pm when the girl, along with a friend, arrived in an auto from Bandra and alighted near a chawl.
Realising that they did not have enough cash to pay the fare, the friend went to the chawl where her relative lives to get more money while the girl waited inside the auto.
When her friend took time to return, the girl tried to look for her inside the chawl but the auto driver insisted that she pay him immediately.
The girl offered to give her mobile as security but the driver refused and an argument ensued.
The row attracted a group of men playing cricket nearby. Frightened by their lewd remarks, the girl tried to sprint away but was chased and molested, the police said.
PTI quoted an officer as saying the girl was almost stripped.
However, another officer said: “According to the girl’s statement, five or six men misbehaved with her and grabbed her. She was not stripped, nor were her clothes torn.”
The girl apparently ran to a restaurant to seek help but she was driven away, according to the PTI report.
A passing motorist intervened and rescued the girl. A beat constable, Ravindra Patil, reached the spot and caught one of the suspects.
The incident comes days after new Mumbai police commissioner Rakesh Maria accorded top priority to crimes against women.
He had proposed a helpline that women could call to report sexual assaults and expect immediate help.