A Punjab minister caused a fresh controversy on Saturday by describing as “God’s will” the death of a 13-year-old girl who was molested and thrown out of a moving bus in Moga district.
"Nobody can stop accidents. Whatever happens is God's will," Education minister Surjit Singh Rakhra said.
“We also travel every day, we do not know what will happen,” said Rakhra, a leader of the ruling Shiromani Akali Dal. “We will take precautions in future but we can't stand in front of nature, whether it's an accident or any other thing.”
The teenager and her mother boarded the bus at Moga on Wednesday and they were thrown out after being subjected to indecent gestures and lewd comments following an altercation over the fare. Four men have been arrested in the case.
The girl’s family has decided not to cremate her body, which has been kept in a mortuary, till the owners of the company running the bus are booked for her death. The bus belongs to Orbit Aviation , a company owned by Punjab deputy chief minister Sukhbir Badal, the son of chief minister Parkash Singh Badal.
The girl’s father has alleged that he is being pressured by “some people” to reach a compromise on the issue. The family has turned down the Punjab government's offer of Rs 20 lakh as compensation.
I want the criminals to be punished. I dont want money, I want justice: Father of deceased girl, Moga Incident pic.twitter.com/VMitloJZCh— ANI (@ANI_news) May 1, 2015
Chief minister Badal has acknowledged that the bus belongs to a company owned by his family. He said the accused will be brought to book.