West Bengal chief minister on Monday broke her silence over the Opposition criticism that she had described the Park Street car rape incident as 'fabricated', saying her initial response was based on a preliminary probe report and accused a TV channel of distorting her statement.
"Two or three isolated incidents had taken place. I do not support them. In the Park Street incident, a particular TV channel dished out lies attributing to me. I never told them that nothing had happened or otherwise. Whatever the police told me as per preliminary investigation, I said," she said in an interview to three TV channels.
She said whatever report she had been given, it was revealed there that molestation had indeed taken place.
"It was seen in the investigation that the FIR which was filed against three people initially were not present on the spot at the time of the incident," Banerjee said.
"I do not interfere in the impartiality of the police and the press. This is not my job," she asserted.
She pointed out that the woman concerned had filed an FIR with the Park Street police station four days after the incident occurred on February 5.
It was a rule that in any incident of molestation or rape, medical evidence should be procured within 72 hours, failing which the evidence will not exist, she explained.
"My question as a common person, and not as the chief minister, is that why the policy diary was lodged on February 9 when the incident had taken place very early in the morning of February 5," she said.
She said she could have got the incident inquired into in a better way had the police diary been lodged on February 5 itself and the medical report and forensic reports were made available early.
"The police had told me that the woman had kept on insisting the name of the three persons against whom FIRs were filed initially, but later through CCTV footage the main culprits were nabbed," Banerjee said.
Banerjee praised Kolkata Police for solving the case and criticised a section of media for creating a division within the police force.
Incidentally, the chief minister had faced flak from many quarters that she failed to praise the police for cracking the case.