The insensitivity of Rajasthan Police was on full display when a woman complaining about police inaction on her complaint of rape was dragged by her hair by a senior official and forcibly taken to hospital.
Photos and a video of the incident, which occurred on Monday in Jalore, 390 km from state capital Jaipur, have gone viral on social media. The police action coincided with celebrations of ‘naari shakti’ (women’s power) at Republic Day events in Delhi.
The woman had launched a sit-in protest outside the office of the sub-divisional officer (SDO) on January 2 over police’s alleged failure to act on her complaint. On Monday, Deputy Superintendent of Police Sunil Panwar and some policemen went to the spot and dragged the woman and her mother for a few metres before dumping them in a police vehicle that took them to hospital.
The woman is currently in Sanchore government hospital while her parents are back at the site of the protest.
Police said their action was necessitated by the woman’s deteriorating health but failed to explain why there was only one woman constable in the team that ended her protest.
“There was a shortage of staff due to panchayat elections but the woman was removed from there in the most respectable way possible,” said Satyendra Kumar, Superintendent of Police of Jalore.
The woman’s counsel, Sadanand Bishnoi, said she filed a rape case against a man named Vasudev Sain on December 5, 2014. She recorded her statement under section 164 of CrPC but police did nothing, he said.
Bishnoi claimed police were not acting because Sain is close to BJP MP Devji Patel. Sain has also been elected sarpanch of Bhadwal village in Jalore district.
The woman began her sit-in to pressure police to arrest Sain. She also approached the Inspector General of Police of Jodhpur Range, who moved the case to the Circle Office (Gudha Malani) on January 8. Eight days ago, she turned her sit-in protest into an indefinite fast.
Bishnoi said the woman’s family was ostracized by a panchayat for filing a rape case.
But Superintendent of Police Kumar said the woman’s brother had told police that the allegation of rape was false.