| Arpita Shaw displays the injuries on her wrist and forearm, allegedly inflicted on her by a policeman at Chitpur police station. Picture by Amit Datta
Ten days after chief minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee urged his force to “curb crime against women”, a policeman allegedly roughed up a woman inside Chitpur police station.
Arpita Shaw, 23, lodged a complaint against a cop in plainclothes and another three in uniform — one for assaulting and abusing her and the rest for remaining mute spectators.
Arpita said her husband Manoj, who runs a dhaba from their Khagendra Chatterjee Road home, off Chitpur thana, was picked up by the police on Thursday morning when he led protests against construction workers at a site declared unauthorised by Calcutta Municipal Corporation (CMC).
When she learnt about the arrest, Arpita rushed to Chitpur police station with sister-in-law Rukmini.
“I met officer-in-charge (OC) Nabin Chandra Roy, who told us to wait till he returned from a meeting. As soon as the OC left, I heard my husband’s screams from the duty officer’s room. I entered the room to find him sitting on the floor with four policemen — one of them in plain clothes — standing around him,” she said.
“The man not in uniform started misbehaving with me when I asked them why they had arrested my husband. He hurled abuses at me, warned me not to teach him the law, and then started started beating up Manoj. When I tried to stop him, he turned on me,” she added.
According to the complaint, the policeman slapped her four times. He also grabbed her arms. Her bangles snapped and some glass pieces pierced her wrist and forearm.
“I was forced to leave the room, my arm and hand bleeding and the left side of my face and neck bruised and aching,” said Arpita.
She first went to RG Kar Medical College and Hospital for treatment — where the medical certificate (No. 46443, 31.05.2007) confirmed the injuries — before returning to Chitpur police station to lodge a complaint.
Manoj is behind bars on charges of assaulting some masons at the construction site.
When news reached Lalbazar — where the chief minister, at the annual meeting of Calcutta Police Association on May 21, had told his force to “be serious” about their role in making women feel safe — an inquiry was ordered.
“Assistant commissioner of police Mohammad Akram is supervising the inquiry and if the allegation is found to be true, stern action will be initiated against the guilty, that may extend to suspension,” said Pradip Chatterjee, deputy commissioner of police (headquarters). All four policemen accused in the case will be produced in front of the complainant for identification, added Chatterjee.