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Hooch attack on lady & kids

Tamluk, Aug. 26: A widow and her three daughters were beaten up allegedly by the owner of a hooch den and his associates in East Midnapore on Sunday evening for refusing to entertain their indecent proposals.

The 32-year-old woman, who had to be admitted to Tamluk district hospital along with one of her daughters, alleged today that police did not register her complaint.

Personnel at Panskura police station have, however, accepted a complaint by an aunt of the widow. The complaint mentions the attack on the widow, her children and the aunt’s daughters. The widow alleged that the police refused to register a separate complaint she wanted to lodge about her harassment at the hands of the hooch den owner and his customers for the past few months and the attack on her and her daughters.

“There are several illicit liquor dens near our home. Lots of people come to these dens from outside our village every day. Sometimes, they bang on our doors after drinking and make indecent proposals,” said the woman, who works in a brick kiln.

“I never agreed to their immoral proposals. Angered by this, Subhas Barik, the owner of one of the liquor dens, disposed waste from his outlet in front of my house on Sunday morning. When I protested, Barik, his brother Sudhir and sons Kartik and Ganesh beat me up,” the widow said.

“They hit me on the head with sticks. My eldest daughter was hit on the nose and she started bleeding. Another of my daughters was kicked in the stomach. Even my youngest daughter was not spared. She was slapped in the face. Two of my cousins were also assaulted when they tried to rescue us,” she added.

Her aunt said: “The police advised me to write that my daughters were assaulted when they tried to rescue their cousins. They told me there was no need for my niece to lodge a separate complaint.”

East Midnapore police superintendent S.K. Jain said the widow and her children could have been attacked over a “property dispute”.

Asked about the widow’s allegation that the local police did not accept her complaint, the SP said: “We have received one complaint and we are investigating it.”

An officer of Panskura police station said Barik and the other accused were absconding.